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FRANK DELL’APA | SOCCER NOTEBOOK

Uruguay team was after Diego Fagundez, but Revolution held on to him

Diego Fagundez has 50 goals in seven-plus seasons with the Revolution.
Diego Fagundez has 50 goals in seven-plus seasons with the Revolution.(darryl dyck/AP)

FOXBOROUGH — Club Nacional, one of Uruguay’s strongest teams, has failed in an attempt to acquire the Revolution’s Diego Fagundez on loan.

Fagundez, who has one year remaining on his contract, plus a club option year, said he hoped to join Nacional.

“If everyone in the party is happy for it, of course I’m going to go,” Fagundez said Tuesday, the official opening of Revolution training camp. “How can I say no? They play [Copa] Libertadores, they play Clasicos. It’s different.

“But like I said, the Revs already made the decision. I had nothing to do with it because I’m under contract, so it was an easy way for me to go with it. I’m still under contract, option year, and if the Revs pick it up, they pick it up, and if they don’t, we’ll see where it all goes.”

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Washington Fagundez, Diego’s father, has been negotiating with clubs in Uruguay, according to El Pais Ovacion, the Montevideo daily. Diego has attracted interest from European clubs, partly because he possesses an Italian passport.

Fagundez, 23, was born in Montevideo and moved to Leominster as a youngster. He briefly played for US junior teams until it was revealed that he was not a US citizen (he is a permanent resident in the United States). He then performed for Uruguay’s U-20 national team.

“It’s a new year, and trying to make sure I focus on this year, do well,” Fagundez said. “And at the end of the season, if they offer me something, we can sit and talk, and if they don’t, we need to find something.

“It was all quick stuff. They asked me to reach out [to the Revolution] and I gave them information and didn’t really have time to say anything. I just told them to reach out to the Revs, and if they were interested, they were going to say it.

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“But I think we all know that the Revs said no, or it wasn’t the deal they really wanted, so it wasn’t really worth it for them.

“So right now, just have to keep focused on the Revs and make sure that I’ll be ready for preseason and the season that comes.”

Nacional has connections to MLS through coach Eduardo Dominguez, who was a central defender for the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2008, and team manager Ivan Alonso, who was recruited to the league while playing in Mexico. When Dominguez was coaching Colon de Santa Fe in 2017-18, he inquired about bringing Fagundez to the team, according to Ovacion.

Fagundez scored a goal in his Revolution debut as a 16-year-old in 2011 and led the team with 13 goals in 2013. He played as a striker and winger, then moved into a playmaking role last year.

“I always prefer playing No. 10, that’s where I feel more comfortable,” Fagundez said. “But, of course, I’ll play wherever I need to play as long as I’m playing and helping the team. That’s what’s important.”

Washington Fagundez was a goalkeeper for Central Espanol in Uruguay before moving to the United States.

The Revolution are set to train at Gillette Stadium, then travel to Marbella, Spain.

A win for Pareja

Former Revolution midfielder Oscar Pareja gained his first victory coaching Club Tijuana, a 1-0 result at Club Leon Sunday. Former MLS players performing for Tijuana include Fabian Castillo, a starting midfielder at FC Dallas under Pareja, Miller Bolanos (Chivas USA), and Erick “Cubo” Torres (Houston Dynamo), plus US national teamer Benny Joe Corona.

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