Former Arsenal starlet becomes MLS target

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Merida and Fabregas at Arsenal
Merida and Fabregas at Arsenal.

Francisco Merida Perez will be a name that all Arsenal fans will double take at and remember what could have been. Fran Merida - as he's more commonly known - was supposed to be the next big thing in North London after moving from Barcelona. Hailed as the new Fabregas, big things were expected of the youngster but it never materialised. And now the playmaker could potentially be set for a move to MLS.

Still only 24-years old, Merida has just been released by Brazilian side Atletico Paranaense after only making 6 appearances all season in Serie A, the top domestic division in Brazil. Merida's career has been littered with moves that have ultimately been failures, but according to the MLS Transfers website, one unnamed Major League Soccer side is looking to buck that trend in bringing the Spaniard to North America.

Merida's short career as a professional football has defined him as a player that has refused to fight for first team football, instead looking for the easy way out to a new team making false guarantees and promising action.

This was true at Arsenal, where after a promising loan spell with Real Sociedad and several bright displays in Cup tournaments and the odd Premier League game, Merida looked set to be firmly in the battle for nailing himself a place in the match day squad and finally becoming the new Cesc as all had hoped him to be. 

But he refused to sign a new contract offered by Arsene Wenger and jumped ship to Atletico Madrid. He was only 20 and had just rejected the chance to stay at one of the finest youth breeding grounds in English and world football for young players. 

Spells at Atleti, Braga, Hercules and now Atletico PR all blew up in his face, and a move to MLS seems like a good way to revive a career that looks close to its end despite being so young.

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