The Mane Land has learned that Orlando City is finalizing a transfer that will bring 21-year-old Ecuadorian winger Alexander Alvarado to the City Beautiful. Alvarado will join on loan through the end of the 2020 season with an option to buy. An official announcement should follow soon.
Rumors of the move circulated online but there were some inaccuracies in the reporting, per our sources. The actual terms of the deal are contrary to some online reports that stated OCSC had bought Alvarado outright on a four-year deal. Online reports also stated that Aucas would retain 50% of sell-on rights but it is our understanding that is also not correct.
The Quevedo, Ecuador native has played with Sociedad Deportiva Aucas in his country’s Serie A since 2018, scoring a goal and adding four assists this season in 13 matches this season. He also has a goal in two Copa Sudamericana appearances in 2020. Prior to joining Aucas he spent time in S.D. Quito’s system. Since 2015, Alvarado has scored six goals with 14 assists across 89 appearances in all competitions at the club level per Transfermarkt.
He has international experience with the Ecuador U-20s, scoring four goals in 17 matches, and already has been capped twice with the senior national team. He was part of the 2019 Ecuador U-20 side that won the South American championship and finished third at the U-20 World Cup.
What it Means for Orlando City
Alvarado fits the profile for what the Lions have sought since Luiz Muzzi — and later Oscar Pareja — joined the club. He’s young, with good upside and low-risk, as the Lions don’t have to exercise the option to purchase. Orlando City has made great use of loan deals previously on players like Ruan, Antonio Carlos, Rodrigo Schlegel, and Andres Perea.
He’s short — around 5-foot-5, depending on where you look online — but can play on either wing, with good power from either foot. As such, he fills a need for Orlando City, which is a bit thin behind the trio of Nani, Chris Mueller, and Benji Michel.
The Lions can evaluate Alvarado for the rest of this season and determine whether or not to make the purchase. It’s anyone’s guess how long the immigration paperwork will take, as it always seems to be interminably long for Orlando City players, and he will require an international slot, so there may need to be another minor move to accommodate the signing before he can play.
This is a player Pareja can develop over time and perhaps end up being sold down the line to a European club.
Here is a highlights package showing what the young Ecuadorian can do: