Toronto FC have strengthened their defensive options with the signing of left-back Raoul Petretta from Turkish top-flight club Kasımpaşa Spor Kulübü.
The former Italy youth international arrives on a three-year contract through the 2025 MLS season with a club option on 2026, with TFC using Targeted Allocation Money (TAM) to complete the transfer.
“Raoul is an experienced young left-back who established himself in a strong European club and has gained experience playing at a high level in European competitions with FC Basel,” Toronto FC head coach and sporting director Bob Bradley said in a club press release.
“He is a smart passer, disciplined defender, and has the work rate to get up and down the left flank consistently. We are excited to have him join Toronto FC and strengthen our backline.”
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Born in Germany, Petretta is a product of the FC Basel youth system and went on to make 152 senior appearances for the club across all competitions, scoring 10 goals and providing 12 assists, while also winning the 2016/17 Swiss Super League and two Swiss Cups.
The 25-year-old moved to Kasımpaşa midway through 2022 and played 12 times for the Turkish club, notching one goal and one assist.
Petretta fills a position of need for TFC, who have lost both Domenico Criscito and Luca Petrasso this off-season.
The Reds are looking to return to the MLS Cup Playoffs in 2023 after missing out in the last two seasons, turning in consecutive 13th-place finishes in the Eastern Conference.
Toronto begin the new campaign away at DC United on February 25.
FC Barcelona target LA Galaxy defender Julian Araujo
FC Barcelona wants LA Galaxy right-back Julian Araujo.
The La Liga club has submitted a bid for the player, requesting a loan spell with the option to purchase, 90min sources confirm. The move would see Araujo replace Hector Bellerin, who is set to be joining Sporting Lisboa.
Sources add Araujo is strongly pushing for a move to FC Barcelona, speaking to the MLS club on the situation. He also previously affirmed his desire to move abroad in an exclusive interview with 90min.
“I definitely want to go to Europe. It’s my dream. My goal is to go to Europe. I want to reach my highest potential and I feel like going to Europe is going to help me do that,” he said exclusively to 90min.
“I’m someone that wants to learn everyday, someone that takes advice from everybody, that wants to learn. I know, like I said, to reach my highest potential I need to go play in the best, the top leagues.”
FC Barcelona is not the first European team to come close to signing the player. He was previously targeted by FC Porto, Sevilla and Stade Rennes during the Summer window, given his 2022 MLS campaign.
He managed nine assists and 14 goal scoring attempts in 33 games, adding to his total tally of one goal and 20 assists in 100 overall appearances for the Galaxy.
The defender has quickly proved himself as one of the brightest young talents of Major League Soccer, becoming an integral part of LA Galaxy and earning appearances with the Mexican national team to catch the eye of several international clubs.
Colorado Rapids sign Alex Gersbach from Ligue 2 side Grenoble Foot 38
The Colorado Rapids have signed left back Alex Gersbach from Ligue 2 side Grenoble Foot 38, through the 2025 MLS season with a club option for 2026.
“We’re delighted to continue reinforcing our roster with a player like Alex,” Padraig Smith, Colorado’s EVP & general manager said in a release.
“Alex is a technical fullback who brings a high level of energy and ability to consistently get up and down the flank. We look forward to welcoming him to Colorado and incorporating him into our group.”
Gersbach managed three goals and 12 assists in 183 professional appearances for various clubs, including Rosenborg (Norway) and Lens (France) to NAC Breda (Netherlands) and AGF (Denmark). He’s also been capped five times for the Australian national team, last featuring in a friendly against Kuwait in October 2018.
He stands as the latest addition for the Rapids, who have been quite busy this offseason. The team have acquired DP forward Kévin Cabral, in a trade from LA Galaxy, DP center-back Andreas Maxsø from Brondby IF and midfielder Connor Ronan from Wolves.
Colorado also recalled homegrown midfielder Cole Bassett from his loan in the Eredivisie.
It’s a much-needed roster rebuild for the Colorado Rapids, after concluding the 2022 campaign in 10th place of the Western Conference. The team fell drastically, going from first in 2021 to missing out on the playoffs just one campaign later.
The team hopes to bounce back in 2023, kicking off the campaign on February 26 against the Seattle Sounders.
Cade Cowell on his international future as a dual-nationality player ‘ I really could play for both’
Cade Cowell stands among the dual-nationality players inching towards an important international decision.
The San Jose Earthquakes player can represent both the United States and Mexico, as an American citizen with family ties to Mexico. Cowell’s maternal grandfather enabled Cade, and his younger brother Chance, to file the necessary paperwork to obtain a Mexican passport in May 2022.
Up until now, the forward has only featured for the US men’s national team, working through youth levels before earning his first senior cap on January 25, 2023. Mexico has not yet called him up to a camp or friendlies.
But he insists on taking a pragmatic approach to international football by leaving both options open.
“It’s good to know I have the option, you have to have an open mind. I really could play for both. If one doesn’t call me, I can play for the other. It’s really what it is,” he said exclusively to 90min.
Cowell emphasized the decision will not be emotional, admitting he does not hold a strong connection to Mexico.
“I mean, honestly I don’t have too much of a connection [with Mexico.] I’ve only been on trips for soccer. My brother has been way more than me, so I am sure his connection is much more. But I don’t really have much of a connection to the country.”
Though Cowell has featured for the American team before, he remains eligible to play for Mexico without applying for FIFA’s One Time Switch since the games were unofficial friendlies. But with Nation’s League matches coming up in March, commitment is on the horizon.
On a club level, the forward will head into his fifth professional season with the San Jose Earthquakes in Major League Soccer, where he’s managed nine goals and 12 assists in 81 appearances. He first kicked off in 2019, after working through the Quakes Academy to earn a Homegrown Player contract.
But it wasn’t until 2021 that Cowell began leading the attack for the California team, recording five goals and six assists for the team. Though the Quakes have seen a decline in form, concluding in the bottom half of the Western Conference table in recent years, new head coach Luchi Gonzalez is confident Cowell can inspire success.
Leicester confirm signing of defender Harry Souttar from Stoke City
Keylor Navas joins Nottingham Forest on loan
Nottingham Forest confirm signing of Jonjo Shelvey from Newcastle
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