TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Report

Luis Suarez to Major League Soccer? The player himself says it’s a distinct possibility.

The Uruguay national team star said he has “five or six offers” from unnamed MLS teams as he sorts his club future. The 35-year-old striker is currently a free agent after leaving Atletico Madrid, and the league’s Secondary Transfer Window runs through Aug. 4 (began July 7).

A deciding factor for Suarez, should he come to MLS? Being in top shape for the Qatar 2022 World Cup, and the 2022 season’s schedule seemingly plays a significant role there.

The regular season carries through Decision Day on Oct. 9, then the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs run until MLS Cup on Nov. 5. That gives a roughly two-week period before the World Cup starts Nov. 21, though participating players from non-playoff teams would have roughly six weeks off.

"The market in MLS is very complex – some clubs want you, but they don't have the slots, and so it would have to be for January,” Suarez said during a Radio Sport 890 interview. “Other clubs want you now, but I have to evaluate if they have a chance to qualify for the playoffs.

"I'm not closing the door to anyone and I've listened to all the offers. But if some MLS teams don't qualify for the playoffs, they end their season in the first week of October, and that's not useful for me because I would stop for a month ahead of the World Cup, which wouldn't be good for me."

Where to? And how?

That criteria may limit Suarez’s potential MLS destinations, with over 40% of the season still remaining. And there’s also the matter of if he’d command a Designated Player spot like summertime signings Lorenzo Insigne (Toronto FC) and Hector Herrera (Houston Dynamo FC), or if a team could finesse a Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) deal like LAFC have with Gareth Bale and Giorgio Chiellini – all high-profile additions from European teams.

One nugget emerged Sunday night, though, with The Washington Post’s Steven Goff writing that reported incoming D.C. United manager Wayne Rooney would try and bring Suarez to the Black-and-Red. They have two DP spots open alongside Taxi Fountas, though face an uphill climb to reach the playoffs (currently 13th in the Eastern Conference standings).

Suarez's esteemed background

Should Suarez indeed come to MLS, he’d be one of the highest-profile players in the league. He’s enjoyed a storied European career over the past 15 years, highlighted by time at Ajax, Liverpool, Barcelona and Atletico Madrid.

Suarez’s production levels make him Uruguay’s all-time leading scorer with 68 goals in 132 caps. He’s combined for 336 goals and 182 assists across LaLiga, the Premier League and the Eredivisie. Alongside Lionel Messi and Neymar, he was part of the famed MSN frontline that brought Barcelona a 2015 UEFA Champions League title over Juventus.

And while Suarez’s in the closing stages of his professional career, he’s coming off a productive year with Atletico Madrid that included 11 goals and three assists in 35 matches. He’s also reached double-digit goals every year since turning pro in 2005 with Nacional in his native Uruguay, before heading overseas to join Groningen in Holland.

Now, it’s a matter of seeing if Suarez picks MLS for his next chapter. The World Cup, as mentioned, is front of mind as La Celeste are drawn into Group H alongside Ghana, Portugal and South Korea. The two-time world champions have made every World Cup since 2010.