The Rafael Robayo rumors have increased in the last several days and will continue as the MLS transfer window reaches its conclusion on July 27. The Colombian midfielder is allegedly interested in returning to the Millonarios, his previous club before the Chicago Fire, and a transfer may be happening soon. Since Robayo takes up one of the Fire's eight international slots, it would not be surprising to see them make a move and free up a spot.
The Rumors about Rafael Robayo
Several reports have appeared on July 15, 16 and 17, and they indicate that the Millonarios are interested in getting Rafael Robayo back. On July 17, a report claimed that the Chicago Fire are also interested in the transfer. Robayo has stated, "Yo necesito más minutos y si aquí Frank (Klopas) me da esa tranquilidad de que voy a jugar, no hay ningún problema porque estoy feliz. [I need more minutes and if Frank (Klopas) gives me the reassurance that I will play, there is no problem because I'm happy.]"
El Espectador claims that Robayo is concerned by the limited amount of play time he has seen this season with the Chicago Fire and is worried about keeping his fitness levels up. He has also shown an interest in participating in the Copa Sudamericana 2012. Robayo may actually want the transfer to the Millonarios. Nevertheless, the rumors may not become reality, and fans may still see Robayo on the Chicago Fire roster.
The Coveted International Spot
If the transfer rumors are valid, then the Chicago Fire will get an open international spot. Since MLS limits teams to eight slots, the transfer of Rafael Robayo would give the team more options. The uncertainty surrounding Sebastian Grazzini's departure could mean that the team would have two international spots left open. However, the reports have not been confirmed by either club. In addition, Rafael Robayo will be attending training prior to the July 18 match against the New York Red Bulls. This means that he will probably travel with the team and could be a substitute or in the starting lineup.
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Lana follows MLS, UEFA and FIFA. She has been a faithful fan of the Chicago Fire since 1998. Follow @Lana_Bandoim on Twitter.