Castrillon drawing interest

Midfielder has recovered from knee injury and is back in first team

Jaime Castrillon vs LA Galaxy

Photo Credit: 
Bart Young / Colorado Rapids

With Jaime Castrillón returning to full health after offseason knee surgery, interest in the player has picked up from his native Colombia. Rumors of interest from his hometown club, Independiente Medellín, have emerged in recent days via social media, and after Wednesday’s practice in Commerce City, Castrillón and Rapids Head Coach Oscar Pareja confirmed that they had been contacted by the Colombian club, which has interest in the attacking midfielder.

“Medellín has shown an interest for Jaime Castrillón and it’s just normal, because we have history in Medellin,” said Pareja. “They contacted us mostly because of the language.  Now the next step is… that they need to get in official contact with the club and express what they want.

“Is there interest in Medellín? Yes. Officially? No, because they need to go through the right channels which is our Technical Director and our President.”

While the interest may be present for the midfielder’s services, both Pareja and Rapids Technical Director Paul Bravo confirmed that Castrillón is in the team’s plans and that no firm offers had been received. However, Pareja reiterated that whenever outside clubs express interest, if there’s an offer that benefits the player and the Rapids, he will listen.

“If they come with an offer that is a benefit to the club and the player and everything makes sense and we can bring another young player to keep developing and keep moving forward, then we would explore it,” said Pareja.

“With Jaime we have such a good relationship and he has been a professional, and the club loves him and they will build him here. But Jaime understands as well the possibilities are open for him. If there is any negotiation that is good for the club and the player, the doors are open to everybody.”

Save: Castrillon's diving header denied

Castrillón had also been rumored to join Medellín following his standout 2012 season with the Rapids, when he scored a team-high eight goals. However, a condition in the midfielder’s knee was discovered and he stayed with Colorado and underwent surgery. After recovering, Castrillón made his 2013 debut on June 15 against San Jose, and made his first start four days later at the Chicago Fire.

Independiente Medellín was Castrillón’s first professional club, where he played from 2002-2011 with only short stints in China in 2009 and at Colombia’s Once Caldas in 2010. The 30-year-old midfielder also made 29 appearances with the Colombian National Team from 2004-2007, and is originally from Puerto Nare, near the city of Medellín.