Toronto Loans Jacob Shaffelburg to Nashville, Who Has Option to Buy
Toronto FC announced that they have loaned young 22-year old winger Jacob Shaffelburg to Nashville SC (who also pick up a purchase option at the end of the season in the deal). Nashville will also receive an International roster spot for the remainder of this season. In return, Toronto receives 225K in General Allocation Money (GAM) (with all of it being 2022 GAM).
It's unclear whether Toronto would get any additional assets if the option to buy is picked up.
Shaffelburg is a former Homegrown player for Toronto, having signed in 2019 after a tenure in Toronto's academy. For his career, he has appeared in 47 MLS matches, with 26 starts. He's scored 3 goals with 6 assists in that span.
This season, Shaffelburg played a lot early in the year, but has seen his playing time dip in the last month or two. He's also then found himself even further down the depth chart after the recent additions of Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Bernardeschi. He has played just 31 minutes across Toronto's last five matches.
Shaffelburg has appeared in 13 matches this season (with 6 starts). He hasn't scored, but has contributed two assists this season across 578 minutes. He's completing 69.1% of his passes.
He had a solid year last year for Toronto where he scored 3 goals, with 3 assists, across 995 minutes (20 appearances/11 starts). He also completed a career-high 71.1% of his passes a year ago.
Shaffelburg is worth $2.2 million on Transfermarkt. So, on the outset it doesn't look like Toronto got the best value in the deal. However, you have to remember that he hasn't played much recently and hasn't played overly well in the minutes that he has gotten this season. Plus, we don't know what potential assets (if any) that Toronto would get if the move is made permanent. If this just turns out to be a loan for the remainder of the season (which I doubt it remains), then picking up 225K in GAM for a player who had fallen out of the rotation is a solid pickup. Whether the option to buy is picked up (and what looks like) will go a long way in determining the value of this deal.
This trade continues a very busy transfer window for Toronto that has seen them bring in Insigne (signed a pre-contract in the winter) and Bernardeschi as Designated Players. Plus the club has brought in Mark-Anthony Kaye and Doniel Henry. The transfer window has also seen Toronto trade DP Alejandro Pozuelo and mutually terminate their contract with Designated Player Carlos Salcedo.
It's safe to see that this has been a window of drastic changes for Toronto, and while this move isn't as drastic as those, it adds to the roster turnover for the club.
Shaffelburg hasn't necessarily played up to expectations so far in his career (outside of 2021), but he is still young and has a lot of potential. Hopefully he can find more playing time in Nashville, and begin to live up to that potential. Toronto will also potentially look to use the GAM they acquired in this deal before the MLS transfer window closes later this week (Thursday, August 4th).
It's been a rough season for Toronto who currently sits 13th in the Eastern Conference with just 23 points through 23 matches. However, they are just 6 points below the playoff line (which they'll have 11 matches to make up). Toronto had a very rough stretch from late-June to mid-July where they picked up just 1 point across 5 matches, but they have now picked up 4 points in their last 2 matches since. Toronto will hope that their roster moves will help them make a run at the playoffs, using the momentum from their last two matches.