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Minnesota United to Secure Ibarra’s Rights with Attinella Trade

by on 16 December 2016

Earlier we reported on-going talks between Minnesota United and the Portland Timbers that would see Jeff Attinella sent to the Timbers. Now, the deal looks very likely to be completed and it could line up Minnesota for a potential return of Miguel Ibarra.

The exact terms of the trade are still unclear at this point, but as part of the deal Portland would give Minnesota United the rights to sign Miguel Ibarra in MLS, which Portland hold from a discovery claim. The Timbers originally drafted Ibarra in 2012 and subsequently cut him from the roster. Amos Magee, who was then the Timbers’ assistant coach, brought him to the attention of Manny Lagos, who was at the time head coach of the Minnesota Stars, and Ibarra eventually signed for the Stars.

Almost immediately, Ibarra caught Minnesotan fans’ attention, but it wasn’t until the second half of the 2013 season that he began to light up the NASL. In 2014, Ibarra earned the NASL’s Golden Ball award and a call up to the US Men’s national team. His improbable rise makes him one of the most beloved players in Minnesota soccer history.

In 2015, Club León bought Ibarra from Minnesota United in a deal that came close to $1 million. Ibarra is under contract for another year, but has seen his time severely limited in the past six months. Before the 2016 season, Portland attempted to sign Ibarra from León on loan, but the deal fell through.

Minnesota getting hold of Ibarra’s rights in MLS may not lead to the winger’s return, but it could also be the first step in bringing “Batman” back.

Wes Burdine contributed to the reporting.

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  • John Herman

    I gotta think if they’re doing this that they’ve had a plan in the works to get him over for this season. I really like Attinella for us, but GKs aren’t exactly hard to come by here, and it sounds like we’ve been in touch with Portland for a while already.

    Also: if Ibarra comes back, surely Ramirez does too, yeah? Maybe they’ve just been holding out for the double action press conference? Great! I’m going to start expecting that now and be crushed if it doesn’t happen.

  • BJ

    They are playing his music, he’s in the building!!!!!

  • Troy Kadlec

    This is what I’ve been waiting for. I suspected they would make a play to get Ibarra back. I’ll be interested to see what they do at GK though. I thought Attinella was a solid pick. I know Atlanta is getting all the press, but it sure seems like MN knows how to work the MLS system to get what they’re after.

  • If we get Gleeson and the rights to Ibarra eventually coming back I’m good with this.

    • anonymous

      No chance Portland trades both Gleeson and Ibarra’s rights just for Attinella. Gleeson alone is better than Attinella. It’ll probably be just Attinella for Ibarra’s rights.