Considered Minnesota United’s biggest building block just a season ago, star midfielder Darwin Quintero posted on social media Monday that he will not return to Minnesota for a third MLS season in 2020.
A club spokesman in turn said United has not declined the 32-year-old Colombian’s contract option due to pay him $2 million next season. The spokesman declined to comment further.
Brought by United from Mexico to Minnesota in 2018 as its first designated player, Quintero posted that the team decided not to exercise his contract option.
He called his two seasons “living great experiences” and wrote, “I want to thank you for all that was lived, were two years of much learning. My best wishes and thanks for everything.”
Monday started a three-day MLS trade window that ends Wednesday at 7 p.m. Central time. In that time, teams can modify their rosters for next week’s expansion draft when existing teams can protect 12 players each from new franchises in Nashville and Miami.
United coach Adrian Heath last week said the team was considering all possibilities with Quintero, including exercising or declining his 2020 option by a Nov. 21 deadline, trading him to another MLS team or transferring/loaning him to another team in Mexico or worldwide.
“We’re working on that at this moment, still going on,” Heath said Friday, the day United announced Heath and assistant Mark Watson now are responsible for the Loons’ first team.