The saga that was Fabian Castillo’s transfer to Turkish side Trabzonspor is a fairly long one. There were plenty of tweets, photos, comments and reports given about the deal that unfolded over a month and a half.
So how did we get to this place? Sit back and take it all in because this process unfolded like an onion with many layers. We’re going to go back a couple years to see how parts of this unfolded.
September 24, 2014 - Club America expresses interest in Castillo
The first big club to go after Castillo was down in Mexico. This likely helped spark FC Dallas to do the following:
February 9, 2015 - Castillo signs contract extension with FCD
After his first contract ended, Castillo was able to get a new deal from FC Dallas that was reported to being a five year contract. The club wanted to lock up a valuable asset long-term and did so before what turned out to be a breakout year for the young Colombian.
July 21, 2015 - Greek club interested in Castillo
The 2015 summer months hit with plenty of rumors about Castillo.
October 12, 2015 - Swansea City interested in Castillo
Castillo enjoyed a heck of a season in 2015 and before the club’s playoff run, he was earning interest in the UK.
After several months of quiet, things begin to pick up as the summer transfer window begins to heat up.
June 24, 2016 - First rumor to Turkey came out
Now we had seen talks and reports for a couple seasons now of clubs that were interested in getting Castillo from FC Dallas. Unlike the previous ones, this seemed to have a little more to it despite the initial money discussion.
July 22, 2016 - Goal.com reports the updated transfer number
Just as FC Dallas was heading to Colorado, Ives Galarcep broke the news that Castillo and Trabzonspor were in talks over a new deal, close to $4 million. At the same time it was reported that Castillo had skipped out on training and a team meeting and didn’t join the team in Colorado for the big meeting with the Rapids.
July 23, 2016 - FCD draws Colorado without Castillo
No Castillo in the 18 for FCD, no problem as the top two teams in MLS played to a 1-1 draw.
July 24, 2016 - Castillo and his agent board flight to Turkey
As FCD was returning home from Colorado, Castillo and his agent boarded a flight to Turkey without the club’s permission. At the time there was no agreement in place for a deal with the Turkish club.
July 25, 2016 - New details emerge from Brian Straus about the transfer
This was the first bit of news that came out about how the transfer could end up working. At this point, the deal was a $2 million loan for the final few months of 2016, then the Turkish side would have to pony up the remaining $2 million in January 2017. If they failed to do so, then Castillo would return to Dallas.
July 27, 2016 - Videos emerge from Turkey
This is where things really start to pick up on this as fans greeted Castillo in the airport.
July 27, 2016 - Castillo has physical in Turkey
Things start moving along as he is seen doing his physical.
July 29, 2016 - New details on Castillo’s MLS contract
Another fun wrinkle in all of this is when we learned that Castillo’s base salary was actually closer to $700k and not the MLS Player Union figure of $170,750.
July 31, 2016 - Twellman reports the deal is dead
Right before FC Dallas took on the Vancouver Whitecaps in a Sunday afternoon match, Taylor Twellman was on ESPN discussing the transfer and how it basically hit a roadblock at the league front office. At this point it appeared that the money that was expected to come in for Castillo never arrived, thus prompting MLS and FC Dallas to call it off.
July 31, 2016 - Pareja discusses Castillo’s return to Frisco
During his post game press conference, Oscar Pareja spent a couple minutes discussing how the team would welcome Castillo back. His teammates also discussed how they would like to see him back.
August 1, 2016 - Castillo’s agent begins working on deal again
From there it came back to Castillo’s agent Raul Ramirez heading to New York to meet with folks in the league’s front office.
Saliendo de la primera reunión con la MLS..en las próximas horas tendré otra reunión. pic.twitter.com/UdtjVbnbKS— Raul Ramirez (@Raulfdoramirez) August 1, 2016
Castillo has a US based agent, Sebastian Diericx, CEO of STMG also tweeted out that he was apart of the meetings.
All the while US reporters like Jeff Carlisle of ESPNFC discussed how the league wasn’t moving forward on a deal.
League source now confirms new meeting w/Castillo reps. Transfer & new contract on agenda but "at the moment don't see a way forward." #FCD— Jeff Carlisle (@JeffreyCarlisle) August 1, 2016
We also learned that Castillo stayed in Turkey during all of this and didn’t report back to Frisco.
August 1, 2016 - FCD releases first statement
During this entire saga, FCD had only discussed the rumor once with this tweet.
CLUB STATEMENT - There is no deal to transfer Fabian Castillo. We expect him to return to Dallas for training. pic.twitter.com/TG8cF9611J— FC Dallas (@FCDallas) August 1, 2016
August 2, 2016 - Castillo’s agent returns to Turkey following meetings in NY
Entrando a la tercera reunión oficina de la MLS en NY tema venta al fútbol de Turquía del Sr Fabian Castillo.— Raul Ramirez (@Raulfdoramirez) August 2, 2016
After three meetings with MLS, Castillo’s agent flew back to Turkey.
Regresando de NY a Estambul/Turquia y mirando cosas muy positivas para Fabian Castillo en su trabajo como futbolista.— Raul Ramirez (@Raulfdoramirez) August 3, 2016
August 2, 2016 - Trabzonspor makes first official discussion of Castillo
While plenty of Turkish fans had tweeted out about the transfer of Castillo, his new club finally took it Twitter with this tweet:
Profesyonel futbolcusu Fabian Castillo'nun kulübümüze transferi konusunda futbolcu, kulübü ve Major League Soccer ile görüşmelere başlandı.— Trabzonspor Kulübü (@Trabzonspor) August 2, 2016
August 3, 2016 - Trabzonspor VP claims deal is done
VP of the Board at Trabzonspor, Nevzat Aydin, had several tweets late Tuesday and early Wednesday discussing the move and how they were excited to have Castillo there. He also posted a photo with Castillo.
August 4, 2016 - Agreement made for transfer
Once again Straus got the details on the transfer as FCD looks to get $3 million now and up to $1.5 million in January.
Also, his salary gets a bump:
Fabian Castillo to earn €890k per year.— Trabzonspor English (@Trabzonspor_En) August 4, 2016
August 4, 2016 - Castillo shown with Trabzonspor
First up he met with his new coach:
Trabzonspor Fabian Castillo'yu 3milyon dolar karşılığında satın alma opsiyonlu kiraladığını açıkladı pic.twitter.com/Eq3bMDgMj0— GÜNCEL FUTBOL (@futbolkolikkkk) August 4, 2016
And then in training:
August 4, 2016 - Loan made official
Right as we got into the evening on Thursday, FC Dallas made it official as they announced the loan plus purchase agreement.
There was probably more missing from this like tweets when Castillo was being shown around Turkey or when he was dining with new teammates. But hopefully this helps unpack how long of a journey this saga really was over the last couple weeks.