On Monday, the Colorado Rapids took the stunning step of reaching an agreement to sell defender Auston Trusty to Premier League side Arsenal for an undisclosed fee.
Trusty, 23, will remain on loan at the Rapids to start the MLS season and will move to the North London club on July 17, the club announced. In a press release from Arsenal, the club said it intended to loan Trusty to another European club for the 2022–23 season “for further development”.
The deal was reached on a deadline, the last day European clubs can buy or loan players before the summer, and is typically the busiest day of the transfer window.
Trusty came to Rapids in 2019 from the Philadelphia Union and has developed into a solid defensive end during his time at Commerce City. Last season, he led all outfield players in minutes played, with 2,970 minutes in 33 games, one goal and three assists. He has been called up to the US men’s team twice but has yet to play for his first game.
He was the Rapids’ 2021 Defensive Player of the Year and part of the defensive end that conceded the second-fewest goals in the Western Conference with 36.
The Trusty was sold for $750,000 in general money, one of the largest deals in Union history at the time. The union will now receive 25% of the transfer fee as Trusty was sold outside the league after 1 January 2022. Per the club’s 2019 release, the percentage will only apply to any amount of distribution money received in excess of what the Rapids paid. Union for Trusty, not the total transaction fee.
“Auston is ending an exceptional season in 2021 in which he has played a vital role in helping us finish at the top of the Western Conference for the first time in our history,” Rapids general manager Padraig Smith said in a club statement. “We remain committed to attracting the best young players from Colorado and the US and providing them with a platform to thrive, succeed in MLS and have the chance to move to Europe. Auston’s outstanding performances have captured the attention of several European clubs over the past 12 months and we are honored to be part of an organization with the size and scope of KSE, allowing us to assist a player with Auston’s potential to further his development and career aspirations in Europe. “.
Rapids owner Stan Kroenke is also the owner of an Arsenal team and although the Rapids players have trained with Arsenal in the past, this is the first official transfer between the two clubs.
The Trusty began his career in Philadelphia, playing four years under contract with Homegrown. When he debuted in 2018, he became the youngest player in league history to play every minute of a full 34-game season.
He will now become the third Rapids player to be sent overseas since 2021.