The Montreal Impact officially announced Zarek Valentin's season-long loan to Norwegian club FK Bodø/Glimt on Tuesday, underlining the mutual value of the young defender's stint “in a different environment” for the 2013 campaign.
Valentin has already joined Bodø/Glimt during preseason preparations and made a second-half appearance in the Norwegian second-division club's friendly against Tromsdalen on Saturday, where he assisted on his new team's goal in a 1-1 draw. The Norwegian season kicks off this weekend.
"Before any decision, we wanted to make sure that he was ready for this type of experience," said Impact sporting director Nick De Santis in a press release. "We feel that it can be beneficial for both parties. Zarek will continue to grow as a player in a different environment, in a different culture and will practice soccer in a different way. It will be valuable for the club as well as he should get a lot of minutes and experience."
Based in Bodø, a town of some 47,000 residents located just north of the Arctic Circle, Bodø/Glimt won the Norwegian Cup in 1975 and 1993 and are coached by former New York Red Bulls assistant Jan Halvor Halvorsen.
Drafted in the first round of the 2011 SuperDraft by Chivas USA, Valentin made 24 starts as a rookie before Montreal selected him in the Expansion Draft later that year.
The University of Akron product and US youth international logged a goal and an assist in 1,161 minutes with the Impact last season, but did not see playing time this year.