TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Report
After advancing to the Western Conference Final in the Audi 2020 MLS Cup Playoffs, the Loons said in their year-end roster announcement that they were in discussions with the Paraguayan forward about his future with the club. Since, there have been reports that Amarilla would return to Ecuador, where he previously led the country's first division in scoring while loaned to Universidad Catolica.
News: #MNUFC continues to pursue bringing back striker Luis Amarilla for 2021, source tells @PioneerPress, making other reports this week premature. They said Paraguayan would be headed to Liga de Quito, where he led Ecuadorian Serie A in scoring with Universidad Catolica in 2019— Andy Greder (@andygreder) January 13, 2021
Minnesota originally acquired the 25-year-old on loan from Argentine club Velez Sarsfield ahead of the 2020 campaign. That deal involved Targeted Allocation Money and was a 12-month loan with an option to buy.
Last year, Amarilla had two goals and one assist in seven games (five starts). He dealt with various injuries, capped by having season-ending ankle surgery in November as Minnesota geared up for their playoff run. They turned to Robin Lod as a false No. 9 during the postseason, and also acquired Kei Kamara via trade with the Colorado Rapids.
Now, Minnesota only have Foster Langsdorf as a true striker, though he’s made just three substitute appearances since entering MLS in 2018 as a Portland Timbers homegrown. They previously declined the 2021 contract options of Kamara and Aaron Schoenfeld, necessitating the need to bring in reinforcements.
Should Amarilla come back to Minnesota, it’d give them a familiar option in the final third. While he didn’t live up to his first-year promise of 25 goals scored, he certainly showed potential in head coach Adrian Heath’s system.