ISTANBUL — Turkish champion Beşiktaş JK introduced Canadian striker Cyle Larin on Wednesday along with Brazilian forward Vagner Love.
Larin had been in the middle of a tug of war between Orlando City SC, his MLS club, and the Turkish champions. But the two announced a transfer deal Tuesday, with Orlando reluctantly letting go of the 22-year-old from Brampton, Ont.
“I’ve watched lot of games of the Turkish league and I’ve watched obviously a lot of Beşiktaş games,” Larin told a Beşiktaş club interviewer. “I see it’s very physical and demanding. I’m ready for that, I’m ready for that challenge. I’m motivated to work hard and score goals and learn from the players here.”
— Cyle Larin (@CyleLarin) January 31, 2018
The move to Beşiktaş reunites Larin, who has played 23 times for Canada with five goals, with Canadian teammate Atiba Hutchinson.
“He’s a great friend of mine … He just told me I would love it here. A very nice city, very nice people and a very nice organization. They look after you like their own family,” Larin said.
Larin, a former MLS rookie of the year, scored 43 goals in 87 games for Orlando over three seasons.
Larin made no secret after last season that he wanted to test his skills in Europe, only to find Orlando standing in his way saying he was still under contract.
He said playing in the Champions League has always been his dream.
The 33-year-old Love joins Beşiktaş from Turkey’s Alanyaspor.