Fulham have rejected the chance to bring USMNT star Brenden Aaronson back to the Premier League after the midfielder was relegated with Leeds United.
The 22-year-old arrived at Elland Road to significant fanfare, joining compatriots Tyler Adams and coach Jesse Marsch in Yorkshire but it soon turned into a season to forget for the trio. They would be joined by fellow American Weston McKennie in January but Marsch would soon be relieved of his duties with the Whites facing a relegation dogfight.
Two further managers could not arrest the slide, with Javi Gracia having become the second coaching casualty of the season just four matches from the end of the campaign before Sam Allardyce eventually took them down after failing to win any of his games in charge. In all, Aaaronson contributed a solitary strike in 36 appearances during his maiden term in the English top flight.
After three managers were unable to beat the drop, it is clear that several stars will likely be moved on in the current months, especially with a host of players having relegation clauses in their contracts. Among the players believed to be available for a move this summer is Aaronson, with Fulham having been linked with a potential move to bring him to Craven Cottage on loan.
The former Red Bull Salzburg ace had been mentioned as a potential reinforcement for Marco Silva's squad in the number 10 position, with the Daily Mail having reported that the West London club had been in discussions over a potential deal. The Cottagers had been a surprise in the Premier League last season, finishing in a respectable 10th place under the Portuguese coach.
However, it now looks as though this potential opening for the New Jersey-born talent has closed, with the The Telegraph reporting that a move to Union Berlin could be on the cards instead. The Bundesliga team defied the odds to qualify for the Champions League last term, with the Urs Fischer's outfit the latest to consider a swoop, according to the report.
As was the case in terms of a hypothetical switch to Fulham, Leeds United would not be in a particularly strong position to resist the overtures of the German club due to the relegation clause in place in the player's contract. Despite failing to ever really hit the heights expected during his first campaign in England, it appears that his stock still remains high on the continent due to his performances with his previous employers.
The situation also remains complicated due to the fact that 49ers Enterprises are still waiting for final approval to take over the Elland Road club from the EFL. In taking over the reigns at the club, they will assume 100 per cent control from former chairman Andrea Radrizzani once they pass the English Football League’s owners’ and directors’ test.
Although usually a formality, the process can also take a number of weeks to complete. Previously, former Leeds United star Carlton Palmer explained that the EFL Championship club will likely lose Aaaronson for at least this coming season due to the clauses in his contract.
He told Football League World : “It appears that Brenden has a clause in his contract that allows him to leave the club on loan should Leeds get relegated. I would expect the player to depart on loan, if not permanently, this summer given his salary.”