Jordan Morris's reported Swansea City loan move appears to be a matter of if and not when.
Morris's being excused from U.S. men's national team January camp on Wednesday was a big tell his move abroad was imminent, and Swansea's coach took it one step further on Thursday.
"It’s not quite done yet but in the process of getting done," manager Steve Cooper said of the proposed six-month loan arrangement. "It’s taking a little longer than we would have liked, basically down to logistics more than anything else. When it does get done we will be really pleased.
“I am still a bit cautious, as until a player signs and you get them out training and playing then it is not done and dusted. But it will be a good one if we can get it done.”
Morris, the 26-year-old Seattle Sounders star, has spent his whole professional career in MLS, choosing his hometown club over a potential move to Werder Bremen ahead of his 2016 pro debut. In four full seasons with Seattle (he missed the 2018 season due to a torn ACL), Morris has 35 goals and 20 assists in 105 regular-season appearances, with another six goals and three assists in 16 playoff games. He's helped Seattle make the MLS Cup in each of the seasons he's been active, with the Sounders' winning two of the four finals they've reached.
To that end, there's not much more to accomplish in MLS, and with the start of this season not set in stone due to ongoing talks between the league the players association, kicking the tires on a term abroad would represent both a new challenge and a pathway to playing. Swansea is in the mix to be promoted from England's second-tier Championship, and if Morris were to make his move, which was first reported by The Athletic, permanent, he could potentially find himself in the Premier League next season.
He may not be alone in joining Swansea from MLS, with Yahoo Sports reporting Wednesday that U.S. and D.C. United winger Paul Arriola could also be signing with the club on loan. D.C. and Swansea have a common owner in Jason Levien.
Both players are looking to fortify their places in Gregg Berhalter's top rotation, with the U.S. men having the Concacaf Nations League final four, Gold Cup and 2022 World Cup qualifying all on a loaded schedule this year. And with more young stars making strides at some of Europe's top clubs, the competition for spots is fierce.