Nashville SC Trades For TFC’s Lukas MacNaughton
Former Canadian Premier League champion Lukas MacNaughton is en route to Nashville SC.
The Canadian international had lifted the North Star Shield with Pacific in 2021 before being purchased by Toronto FC months later. He made 28 league appearances under Bob Bradley, while also hoisting the belated 2020 Canadian Championship trophy last year.
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Toronto FC will claim veteran forward CJ Sapong in the trade, while MacNaughton and $200,000 in collective GAM will move stateside, though a portion of this is conditional.
MacNaughton rode the bench for the first six matches of TFC’s rough season thus far, but has appeared in every match since coming on as a substitute against Nashville a three weeks ago.
Known as a big, physical presence on the backline who can also produce in the air, the six-foot-two defender got quite a late start to his professional career: he turned professional with Canadian Premier League side Pacific FC in 2019, eventually making 59 appearances for the team as he established himself as a league-leading defender at the CPL level.
Then-PFC head coach Pa-Modou Kah believed MacNaughton was an MLS level defender, with the 28-year-old now set to suit up for his second MLS team.
MacNaughton has long-held the belief he can play at a national team level, and earned his first international cap with a pre-World Cup friendly against Bahrain last year – another goal he had told us about when he first signed with TFC.
The Tennessee-based side has invested in several Canadians of late: it signed Jacob Shaffelburg to a four-year deal, while also adding York United ballers Isaiah Johnston and Chrisnovic N’sa to their MLS Next Pro affiliate, Huntsville City FC.
Toronto FC, meanwhile, has now gone separate ways with both of its Pacific acquisitions, with Kadin Chung mutually terminating his deal to join Vancouver FC last month.