NASHVILLE, TN – Nashville SC announced Monday that the club and forward Aké Loba have mutually agreed to terminate his contract. The move opens up a Designated Player spot on Nashville’s roster.
Loba, 25, was signed for a club-record $6.8 million in July 2021, started just two matches in MLS for Nashville and only managed 899 minutes in his 40-total appearances.
Nashville sent Loba to Liga MX’s Mazatlán FC on loan at the start of 2023. The move was intended to increase Loba’s value, in hopes that either Mazatlán would trigger their purchase option or another team would buy the forward. But after scoring two goals in his first four matches, Loba’s form fell off for the bottom-of-the-table club. Loba had surgery on April 11 to install a screw to correct a metatarsal fracture, effectively ending his time on loan.
It’s important to note that this is a contract termination. Nashville did not exercise their single buyout, which would entail paying Loba the remainder of his guaranteed contract, which was set to end at the conclusion of the 2023 season. Loba made $1,491,475 in guaranteed compensation in 2022.
With Loba off of Nashville’s roster, they now have a DP spot to work with (the other two DP spots are occupied by Hany Mukhtar and Walker Zimmerman). While they could target a free agent and bring in a DP before the summer transfer window, it’s expected that they look to the summer window to make a signing. MLS’s secondary transfer window opens on July 5.