EFL Championship side Blackburn Rovers have confirmed that Duncan McGuire’s loan move has broken down, citing paperwork issues that sees the young forward return to Orlando City.
One of the craziest Major League Soccer transfer sagas in recent years has finally come to an end. McGuire was originally set to join Blackburn on a permanent deal worth roughly $4m, but while he was on a flight to England, talks started to break down with the 1995 Premier League champions unable to sanction a permanent transfer.
However, the deal wasn’t off entirely — the two clubs eventually agreed for McGuire to join on loan for $700k with a purchase option worth up to $9.5m, according to Tom Bogert of The Athletic. All seemed fine, with both clubs confident of the deal not falling through once more.
But it happened again, as Blackburn rushed to submit the required paperwork but they were unable to do so in time as the European transfer window closed, leaving McGuire in a precarious situation.
Blackburn attempted to appeal the decision, but it was unsuccessful.
“Despite all relevant paperwork being completed and uploaded onto the system in good time, the signed registration documents were not submitted prior to the 11pm deadline,” a club statement read.
“Upon comprehensive review of submissions, the EFL Board determined that the upload of documents into a draft application area did not constitute sending documents to the EFL.
“It also took the decision that it was not prepared to exercise discretion to permit the registration outside of the window, as the EFL Executive had correctly interpreted and applied its Regulations and associated Guidance.”
McGuire is now set to return to Orlando with just a couple of weeks remaining. Despite the deal falling through, the Lions still worked to bring in a replace up front in the form of Luis Muriel for $2m, as transfer expert Fabrizio Romano reported.
Blackburn haven’t given up in their pursuit of McGuire, though, as they hope to reach an pre-agreement with Orlando so that the 23-year-old can join in the summer.
“Following the decision by the EFL Board, Duncan McGuire will return to Orlando City in the coming days. We understand and sympathize with Duncan’s situation over last week. He is still an important part of our club and we are committed to providing him with a platform for his growth. We look forward to welcoming him back into our environment soon,” Orlando City said in a statement on X.
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