A young Brazilian could be making his way to New York...but this one plays in goal.
According to a report from Kronen Zeitung, Carlos Miguel Coronel of Red Bull Salzburg “is about to be loaned” to New York Red Bulls ahead of the 2021 season. The Austrian outlet shares that “Gerhard Struber and the Brazilian goalkeeper have agreed on a change.” The move “could take place in the next few days.”
A former Brazilian youth international, Coronel joined FC Liefering in 2015, making 67 appearances. Two years later, he was promoted to Salzburg and has played a few Austrian Bundesliga matches, but failed to break through into a starting role. In 2020, his contract with Salzburg was extended through May of 2023. “He has developed very well and we are convinced that he has even more potential that he can tap,” said sports director Christoph Freund.
The back-up is not completely without his bona fides. In a 2019 Champions League fixture against Napoli, Coronel stepped up for Salzburg amid an injury crisis. He made several crucial saves and was hailed as a savior for rescuing a point. Seven more appearances followed before an almost total return to the bench.
This season, he’s played only one match for former New York manager Jesse Marsch’s squad, a 5-0 romp over WSG Tirol. At 24 years old, perhaps a change of scenery is warranted for the one-time hot prospect.
Coronel is familiar with MLS, having spent part of the 2019 season on loan with the Philadelphia Union. He made four appearances with the first-team and an additional eight with Bethlehem Steel. After six months, the club chose not to activate his option to buy and prematurely ended what was supposed to be a year-long deal.
At the time of his signing, Ernst Tanner praised the goalkeeper. “He possesses impressive athleticism for his size and we believe he has terrific potential,” said the former Salzburg academy director and current Union sporting director.
The New York Red Bulls already have a stocked platoon at the position, but a new manager and goalkeeping coach bring changes to suit their unique tactical needs. Veterans Ryan Meara and David Jensen went back and forth at the number one spot in 2020, a competition seemingly won by the former. Recently acquired Luca Lewis appears to be a long-term development project, expected to spend most of the season in USL with Red Bulls II.
It’s possible the odd man out would be Jensen, under the conventional wisdom that there is no need to spend two valuable international spots on goalkeeper. The Dane’s contract reportedly runs through December of 2022, but his struggles last season are well documented. The coronavirus separated him from his family, claiming “he would not have left” Europe had he known about the impending pandemic.
Time will tell if this rumor is true. Kronen Zeitung says a “few days,” so we will know soon enough.