Derek Cornelius – Vancouver Whitecaps FC – tight shot

TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Contract extension, Loan

The Vancouver Whitecaps have signed Derek Cornelius to a contract extension and sent the player on loan to Greek Super League side Panetolikos FC through December 2022, the club announced Monday. Cornelius' contract has been extended through 2022 with a club option for 2023.

Cornelius, 23, has made one start across five appearances this season. He has 37 MLS appearances with the Whitecaps after joining during the 2019 season from Serbian club FK Javor-Matis. The center back has made 13 appearances with the Canadian national team.

“It is important for Derek to continue playing to progress in his career, and we worked closely with him and his representatives to find the best option,” Whitecaps CEO and sporting director Axel Schuster said in a club statement. “This is a great opportunity for Derek to test himself in a very competitive league.”

Panetolikos finished 12th out of 14 teams in the 2020-21 regular season in Greece and narrowly escaped relegation after a 2-2 aggregate draw against Xanthi, remaining in the Greek top flight on away goals.

The Whitecaps will likely rely on Andy Rose, Erik Godoy and Ranko Veselinovic in central defense moving forward, though could also add another defender. The MLS Secondary Transfer Window remains open for just under another month.