When the Seattle Sounders signed Léo Chú during the summer of 2021, it was with the explicit understanding that they were getting into a new type of talent acquisition. In the words of then General Manager Garth Lagerwey, this was the Sounders’ entry into the “Great Game,” a signal that they weren’t just making moves to improve the team now, but with an expectation this was just the first domino in what could become a series of moves years down the line.
For that to come to fruition, though, the Sounders needed Chú to actually perform. It may not have happened quite as quickly as everyone had hoped, but Chú enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2023 with five goals and seven primary assists. The latter stat led the Sounders and was the most of any U22 Initiative signing in MLS last season.
Despite the production, the Sounders’ biggest offseason move will be to sign a player who will likely supplant Chú’s spot in the lineup. Perhaps seeing the writing on the wall, Chú’s camp has been making it known that there’s interest for him in Brazil. Now, there’s a report that Fluminense – one of Brazil’s biggest teams – are interested in Chú and were told the price is $5 million.