The Fire made the loan move for Spanish midfielder Víctor Pérez official this afternoon. The Real Madrid academy product arrives via an agreement with Real Valladolid that includes an initial loan through the end of June. The Fire have options to extend the loan for the rest of the season and 2016.
“We’re pleased that we are able to have Victor join us in Chicago,” said Frank Yallop via a press release. “He is a dynamic midfielder and fills a position where we were looking for added depth. The loan is a great opportunity for us to bring in a quality player in the early portion of the season and when the time comes, evaluate our options in regards to extending his stay with the Fire.”
The transaction has been in the works for several weeks with personal terms and the loan amount agreed to a little more than two weeks ago. The Fire have been waiting for Pérez's visa to clear and for MLS to approve the terms of the loan agreement before making the announcement. Under those terms, the Fire are assuming very little risk and cost against the budget for the initial part of the loan. If Pérez impresses and the option is picked up there will be some budget maneuvering necessary. Yallop and Brian Bliss do have some room to work with now as a result of the cap/budget amounts established by the new CBA but all eight international roster spots are spoken for.
Pérez will begin training with the team next week and should be available for the Toronto match next weekend if all goes well. How quickly he will be able to get up to match fitness and mesh with teammates is another question as his last appearance in a competitive league game in Spain occurred in October.