Orlando City loan star F Duncan McGuire to Blackburn Rovers

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Orlando City star forward Duncan McGuire was loaned to Blackburn Rovers of the English Football League Championship on Thursday.

The deal is a six-month loan with an option to buy.

McGuire, who turns 23 on Monday, was the sixth overall draft pick by Orlando in 2023 and had a standout rookie MLS campaign. He scored 13 goals with three assists in 29 matches (17 starts) in the regular season to help power the Lions to the playoffs.

“I am really excited about the opportunity to test myself abroad,” McGuire said in a news release. “I know I would not have this opportunity without the support of my teammates, my coaches and the front office at Orlando City. Just 12 months ago I was leaving college soccer (at Creighton) hoping to make my way, and I believe I have made the most of the opportunities that were presented to me in this time.”

The Athletic reported Wednesday that Blackburn pulled out of an initial $4 million transfer agreement to sign McGuire outright.

“It has always been very important for our Club to find and provide the best opportunities for players to continue making strides in their career, and this situation with Duncan was no different,” Orlando City general manager Luiz Muzzi said. “Duncan is a player that, from the time we drafted him to now, grew quickly over the course of the year. We’re happy to have found an opportunity for him to play in England, an ask he made of the Club to accomplish a personal goal of his. We’re looking forward to him making the most of his time with Blackburn and will be cheering him on from afar.”