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Almada departs Atlanta United for MLS-record fee

The Argentina international was previously named the MLS Young Player of the Year.


Atlanta United have announced the departure of Thiago Almada for an MLS-record fee.

The 23-year-old has joined Brazilian side Botafogo for a fee reportedly worth around £16million plus add-ons that could see the deal reach £23m.

Almada joined Atlanta in 2022 and has since gone on to make 79 appearances for the MLS club.

Across two campaigns, he scored 24 goals and provided 34 assists and was named the Young Player of the Year in 2023.

After announcing the departure on social media, technical director Carlos Bocanegra said: “We spent more than a year recruiting Thiago to join Atlanta United and during that process, we agreed that our club could provide a great platform to showcase his abilities and he would have the opportunity to continue his development until the time was right for him to move on to the next challenge.

“We’re proud of what Thiago was able to accomplish in a short period of time, which includes debuting for the Argentine National Team, winning the 2022 FIFA World Cup and winning a pair of individual MLS awards – Newcomer of the Year and Young Player of the Year.

“His success is something we’re all proud of and a ton of credit is owed to our scouting department, in addition to everyone who has worked with him at the club.

“Our team has been prepared for this move and we will look to immediately reinvest in the team during the upcoming summer transfer window.”

Atlanta are 21 games into their MLS campaign and currently sit ninth in the Eastern Conference, occupying one of the two final series play-off places.

However, they sit 23 points off Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami, who lead the way.

They are next in action on Sunday when they take on Real Salt Lake.

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Mitch Fretton

Mitch is a freelance sports journalist with experience working for LiveScore, GOAL and Colchester United. He has experience working from both his desk at home and in the press box at games covering the Champions League and international football.