DeAndre Yedlin returned to Sounders practice on Monday after his men’s national team duties and a subsequent string of TV appearances on the east coast. Reports that Yedlin was working out a deal to play in Europe made their way to the U.S., but according to Yedlin, his representatives and the Seattle organization, the 20-year-old is still a Sounder – for now, at least.
“I’m kind of letting my representatives take care of that right now, and they’ll obviously get back to me on that information,” Yedlin said. “Right now I’m just focused on Seattle, focused on hopefully winning the MLS Cup and just looking to come back and do well.”
Yedlin admitted that playing in Europe had always been a goal for him. But his quick rise up the ranks, thanks to his World Cup performances, might have changed his trajectory. Where those changes might lead him is unknown.
“That’s obviously been my goal since I was a little kid so that was a big one,” he said. “But now I think I almost have to make new goals and re-evaluate and see where I want to be in the next year, next six months. I’ll definitely be doing some of that in the next few weeks.”
That “re-evaluation” process will include his “big support system” here in the U.S., including Sounders coach Sigi Schmid.
Schmid admitted that while watching the U.S.-Belgium Round of 16 match, where Yedlin replaced an injured Fabian Johnson, the thought crossed his mind that Seattle might not be able to keep Yedlin for long.
According to a statement released by the Sounders, Yedlin’s World Cup performance “has drawn lots of interest for him from leagues around the world.”
With those potential opportunities swirling, Schmid said Yedlin will have to use his maturity and his trusted network to make a decision.
“I told him, he’s got to talk to people that he trusts, feels comfortable with, and get the information that he needs to make a decision. But right now, his focus is on our game Wednesday and on our game Sunday.”
Yedlin’s agent, Chris Megaloudis, also noted that the player was still a Sounder, but that there was a window for that to change in the future.
“There is plenty of interest in DeAndre from around the world at this time,” he said in an email message. “Should an opportunity arise that makes sense for the league/club and DeAndre, we will explore it further.”