Toronto FC forward Ayo Akinola may be delighting Turkish supporters in the near future.
According to a report in Transfermarkt, and citing multiple sources, the club Trabzonspor of Turkey’s Süper Lig has shown interest in acquiring the young scoring sensation.
Akinola, 20, scored nine goals in 11 starts for the Reds in the 2020 season.
TFC exercised its 2021 option on Akinola, who reportedly will be a free agent after next season.
Signed as a homegrown player by the Reds in Dec. 2017, Akinola exploded on to the Major League Soccer scene in 2020 by scoring five goals in the MLS is Back Tournament in Orlando, making him the highest-scoring player at the tournament behind LAFC’s Diego Rossi. In a game against the Montreal Impact in that tournament, he recorded a hat trick, becoming the third-youngest player in MLS history to do so.
Akinola, who was born in the U.S. but raised in Brampton, is highly sought after as an international player, being eligible to represent Canada, the U.S. and Nigeria. He got his first senior cap and goal for the US men’s national team in a friendly against El Salvador in December, and also accepted an invitation to Canada’s January camp before withdrawing due to injury. The appearance for the US didn’t cap-tie Akinola, as it was a friendly.
The Reds have a second supremely talented forward on their roster in 23-year-old Ifunanyachi Achara, who scored in his lone game for TFC last season before suffering a season-ending knee injury early in the 2020 MLS campaign. Veteran sniper Jozy Altidore also is scheduled to be back in 2021. It will be interesting to see how new Reds coach Chris Armas utilizes his forwards.