Orlando may have another big money signing on the way this season. Per reports out of South America in January said that 20-year-old Argentine forward Gastón González from CA Unión is set to join the Lions in May on a $3.2 million deal. González will be Orlando's third U-22 signing and the fourth multi-million dollar signing of the Wilf era.
This deal has only been credibly reported by César Luis Merlo, but he is one of the more reputable reporters in the South American transfer market.
González is one of the fastest rising talents in Argentina. His market value has exploded over the last six months, now sitting at over $3.5 million on Transfermarkt. In the 2021 league season, González scored five goals and added seven assists in under 1,500 minutes. He primarily plays on the left wing, but has the versatility to play across the front line.
Assuming this move comes to fruition, it fills out the front line and adds yet another talented prospect from South America. The duo of Benji Michel and Silvester van der Water could be a good fit opposite Facundo Torres on the wing, but neither excelled in 2021. González provides another option on the wing and adds much needed pace and verticality.
I've seen and heard some compare González to another young Argentine who came to MLS: Tito Villalba. The players have different career profiles coming into MLS, but if González can provide close to the same level as Villalba, Orlando will be in great shape. Villalba scored 20 goals and had 16 assists across his first two MLS seasons and his pace and verticallity have yet to be replaced in Atlanta United's squad.
We'll see if this deal gets over the line, but if it does, it's another huge step forward for the club as it ascends up the rungs of the MLS and global hierarchy.