The Sounders’ rather crowded left back situation appears to be nearing some clarity as Bournemouth has apparently declined to recall Brad Smith, while Waylon Francis is reportedly nearing a deal with Costa Rican giants Herediano.
First came a post on Smith’s Instagram account that seems to confirm his return.
Although Smith’s loan runs until July, Bournemouth had the ability to recall him during the early stages of the January transfer window. Even if Bournemouth hadn’t planned on playing Smith, there was some thinking that the Cherries might want to loan him elsewhere in England rather than have him fight for a spot following a three-month break. They appear to have passed on that opportunity, likely thinking he won’t be in their first team picture until next season at the earliest and the level of competition here is as good as any he’d get with an English lower division team.
Francis’ situation appears to be a bit more unsettled, but it looks like he will be heading home soon. Herediano are apparently interested in signing the former Costa Rican international, who likely faces an uphill battle for playing time with the Sounders. Francis was acquired last offseason with the expectation that he’d compete with Nouhou for the starting spot, but he only ended up making five starts and 11 appearances during the regular season. Although his contract is guaranteed in 2019, it’s hard to imagine the Sounders demanding much in return from Herediano.