- By Doug Roberson The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Carlos Carmona acknowledged Thursday the reports of Colo-Colo’s interest in acquiring him from Atlanta United, but the Chilean said he is happy to stay in Atlanta.
Carmona, 30, joined Atlanta United after spending the previous eight seasons in Italy. He started 30 games for the Five Stripes, scoring two goals.
Carmona seemed nonplussed Thursday by the reports of the Chilean club’s interest.
“I would have to weigh everything,” he said. “I know the clubs are talking and that’s it.”
Carmona’s wife is pregnant. She resides in Chile.
The rumors linking Carmona to Colo-Colo, arguably Chile’s biggest club, began weeks ago and have persisted despite Atlanta United Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra saying Monday that Carmona was under contract with Atlanta United and that he was “not going anywhere.”
Carmona said he was glad to hear Bocanegra say that because it means the team values him.
“I’m happy the club wants me, but being a soccer player you never know what’s going to happen the next day,” he said.
Carmona and Jeff Larentowicz formed a solid partnership as defensive midfielders last season, helping Atlanta United post the second-largest goal difference (plus-30) in MLS.
Atlanta United centerback Leandro Gonzalez Pirez said he hopes Carmona stays because he is a good player and good person, but wants him to be happy, wherever that may be.
“(Carlos is) a very important player for us on defense,” Gonzalez Pirez said. “He’s a great man. We’d feel his absence. I wish the best for him, but for me, I want him to stay here.”
Should Atlanta United sell Carmona, the team has several defensive midfielders on the roster, including Larentowicz, Julian Gressel, Homegrown product Chris Goslin and recent draftee Oliver Shannon. The team traded for Darlington Nagbe, who can play defensive midfielder, but is viewed as more of a central midfielder who can connect the defense to the offense.