The transfer of midfielder Lucas Zelarayan ends at The Columbus Crew, the transfer fee is unknown. After three and a half years, Zelarayan’s time with his former team comes to an end to start a new stage with Saudi Al Fathe. After the confirmation of the news, there have been many opinions on the matter.
The player took the opportunity of the Crew’s League Cup clash to say goodbye to the fans, Zelarayan’s emotion was clear; so far, he has played 97 regular season games for the Crew. He has been one of the biggest stars since joining the team in December 2019.
Fan reaction to Zelarayan’s transfer
Once notified of Zelarayan’s transfer to Al Fathe of the Saudi Pro-League, fans have been vocal. Some continuous comments are how much they regret not seeing their favorite player in the team they follow, they also claim that without him it will be difficult to win the cup.
During his career, Zelarayan, compiled 42 goals and 37 assists since he is part of MLS, being one of the helpers to have the MLS Cup in 2020. At that time, he was named MVP of the playoffs.
— MLS Gone Wild ⭐️ (@MLSGoneWild) August 1, 2024
Although many of the team’s fans do not agree with the transfer of one of their best players, the decision has been made and approved. Many hope that it was not a bad decision that will lead to many failures as a team. However, it is something that will be seen over time.
Zelarayan’s Impact on Columbus
Zelarayan leaves the team with a great reputation as a free-kick specialist, being one of his strengths in leading the team to the top in many games. The 31-year-old was the one who benefited Columbus to win two titles, lifting the MLS Cup in 2020 and then the Champions Cup in 2021.
Although the coaches and owners of the Crew team know the quality of the player that has left, they assure that it is part of his professional growth and it is something he needs to achieve more titles than those obtained with the team. They will always remember the memorable goals that took him to the top and helped the rest of the team to lift the cups.
What will happen to Zelarayan’s place in the Crew?
With Zelarayan’s transfer opening up a Designated Player spot on the Crew, they are looking for a replacement, secondary transfer opportunities are available until August 2. Likewise, free agents have signing opportunities until the MLS roster freeze date of September 15.
The team’s direction has changed for the better thanks to Zelarayan’s impact, and those who have had the opportunity to see him on the field say he was one of the driving forces behind the success of many important games.
Now, if they are looking for a direct replacement for Zelarayan, many think the best option would be midfielder Alexandru Matan, a player who has also had a great year. He could become the next star after Zelarayan.
What to expect in the coming months from Zelarayan
Considering that the decision has already been made and there is no going back, the fans and the rest of the public that follows the player’s career hope that he will have the same success in his new team.
Of course, the games to come will be the most watched due to the need to see how he performs with new teammates and different coaching staff.
Zelarayan’s transfer has left many people a bit puzzled, especially, due to the rumors of the offer made to him. However, we can’t discuss figures because there is nothing official, just speculation baseless so far.
Baldwin, Isabel. “Columbus Crew Midfielder Lucas Zelarayan Completes Transfer to Saudi Pro League Side Al Fateh | Daily Mail Online.” Mail Online, Daily Mail, https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-12358321/Columbus-Crew-midfielder-Lucas-Zelarayan-completes-transfer-Saudi-Pro-League-Al-Fateh.html
Dispatch, Colin Gay, Columbus. “‘Enjoy Your Cash I Guess’: Columbus Crew Fans React Online to Lucas Zelarayan Transfer.” Yahoo Sports, Yahoo Sports, https://sports.yahoo.com/enjoy-cash-guess-columbus-crew-100155618.html?guccounter=1
“Reddit – Dive into Anything.” Reddit – Dive into Anything, https://www.reddit.com/r/TheMassive/comments/15fbvk1/mls_gone_wild_numbers_ive_heard_on_the_zelarayan/