Olivier Tremblay covers the Impact for MLSsoccer.com
MONTREAL -- It seems that FK Bodø/Glimt of Norway want to hold on to their right back. The thing is he’s a Montreal Impact player.
Asked about Montreal’s on-loan players on Tuesday, Impact sporting director Nick De Santis told MLSsoccer.com that Bodø/Glimt were interested in keeping defender Zarek Valentin at the club, which is returning to the Norwegian top flight after a four-season absence.
“With Zarek, negotiations are ongoing with Bodø/Glimt and the league as well,” De Santis said. “We’ll see what his future holds.”
Valentin, selected by Montreal in the 2011 MLS Expansion Draft, left for Scandinavia in March 2013 after Bodø/Glimt head coach – and former New York Red Bulls assistant coach – Jan Halvor Halvorsen approached the Impact for a season-long loan. An injury had led to Valentin falling out of favor toward the end of the 2012 MLS season, but in Norway, he played 2,363 minutes in 27 games and scored one goal as Bodø/Glimt clinched promotion for the Tippeligaen as champions.
The situation of Montreal’s two on-loan midfielders, on the other hand, is settled. The Impact declined their option on Sinisa Ubiparipovic, but Nick De Santis also confirmed that 2012 MLS SuperDraft pick Calum Mallace would be attending training camp starting January 27, fighting for a spot alongside the likes of Patrice Bernier, Hernan Bernardello, Collen Warner and Felipe.
Mallace and Ubiparipovic were both loaned to NASL side Minnesota United FC in mid-July. They combined for 20 appearances during their 14-game loan spell, but Mallace made 11 starts to Ubiparipovic’s four, notching a goal and an assist in the process.
“Playing in a league where points and results matter, for a pro team that must win, put [Mallace] in a situation where there was a lot of pressure,” De Santis said. “But he told us that it had been a very positive journey that handed him great responsibilities. He’s got great upside.”