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Jonathan Bornstein says he "would always like to go back to MLS," but no imminent plans

Could he come back? Like always, maybe.

Jonny B. back when he played a lot.
Jonny B. back when he played a lot.
Stephen Dunn

Former Chivas USA defender Jonathan Bornstein was on the ExtraTime Radio podcast on Thursday, and he spoke a bit about his future plans.

You'll recall that Bornstein left Chivas at the end of the 2010 season and signed with Liga MX side UANL Tigres. He seldom played for them, however, leading to constant speculation that Jonny would return to MLS. Although the Portland Timbers held his MLS rights for a time, Chivas USA currently hold them, so naturally, many have expected he'll reunite with the Goats. So far, that hasn't happened.

This past Liga MX season, Bornstein went on loan to Atlante. He did get more playing time, although not much in the league, only coming off the bench three times and playing a total of 37 minutes, though he did see regular action in the Copa MX. Also, Atlante got relegated, so it wasn't a brilliant campaign for the Cancun side.

Here's what Bornstein said on ExtraTime Radio about what's happening for him moving forward:

Actually, I'm trying to figure that out. I went on loan with Atlante for just one season, so the season's over. I'm assuming I'm returning to Tigres right now, but I'm actually talking about that right now with my agent. But my plans are to go back to Tigres and I have six months left on my contract after this, for one more season, and we'll see where it goes from there. Whatever I have to do to continue playing, I'll have to do that. But I think right now, it's go back to Tigres.

So six months to go. He could just try and wait out the last part of his deal, since I can't think of many teams that would pay a fee to get him at this point.

As for the criticism that Bornstein appeared to be happy as a little-used squad player at Tigres, he says the situation wasn't as simple as that:

I tried actually to go out on loan every six months. Sometimes it was a little difficult, based on certain circumstances, one of them being my salary at Tigres, and another what the directives and everyone wants in terms of loan deals...I tried every season to go, because obviously I wanted to go play, I wanted to show myself, but it just wasn't happening. When the opportunity presented itself to go to Atlante, I took it, even though it was for a little bit of a pay cut, I wanted the chance to show myself, and that's how it happened.

Now, with his free agency coming up, what's going to happen? Andrew Wiebe asked Bornstein if he wanted to join his old CUSA and USMNT coach Bob Bradley in Norway at Stabaek (which, come to think of it, makes an awful lot of sense). Bornstein was non-committal, but he did mention he's not ruling out a return to MLS:

With six months left on my contract, obviously I'm going to start pursuing each option. Those are the things we've been talking about, my representatives and I, just trying to plan for the future. I'm trying to keep all my options open, like normal. I would like to do well in the Mexican league with a team. I would always like to go back to MLS, it gave me my shot, I enjoyed playing in that league and everything. [There's] not been any conversations happening yet, but we'll see in the upcoming weeks everything I need to figure out for the next year.

Notably, he did not mention Chivas USA once concerning his future plans. I have no idea if that's a bad sign or not. Again, Chivas control his MLS rights, so even if he didn't go back to his first pro team, the Goats would get something out of it (unless he's a DP, which is definitely not going to be the case).

I've come to think of Bornstein as Chivas USA fans' Moby Dick, in that they keep waiting for him to come back, and he keeps failing to return. I doubt we'll see him this year, although there still is a chance we'll see him in time for the 2015 season. Stay tuned!

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