Update: Several hours after Dio’s initial announcement, LAFC confirmed his departure, calling it a “mutual agreement to part ways due to personal considerations.”
“We believe that being an LAFC player is about more than just what happens on the field,” EVP of Soccer Operations and General Manager John Thorrington said in a team statement. “Dio made us aware of a personal situation he is dealing with, and together we were able to work out a solution for both parties. We wish him all the best and are thankful for everything he helped us accomplish in Los Angeles.”
Los Angeles Football Club’s roster is set to make a big change, with forward Adama Diomande announcing on his social media channels Thursday that he is departing the club.
With the many family priorities in my life, I have decided to terminate my contract with immediate effect in order to best care for my loved ones.
Although I will miss everyone at Los Angeles Football Club, I have put a lot of thought into this decision and have come to the conclusion that it will be the best for all parties. I would like to thank the club for my understanding and our enthusiastic fans. From the bottom of my heart I will never forget this valuable experiences and moments that we shared on and off the field.
Stay safe and best wishes for the remainder of season.
LA is Black & Gold
The announcement seemingly ends Dio’s two-year run with LAFC. Signed in May 2018 from Hull City, he started his LAFC tenure on fire, scoring 12 goals and four assists in 18 regular-season appearances his debut season and essentially carrying the team while Carlos Vela was at the World Cup that summer. All told, he scored 20 goals and 11 assists in 44 regular-season appearances for LAFC, a very good record.
But there were some valleys to go along with the peaks. Diomande was racially abused by an opponent during a U.S. Open Cup game against the Portland Timbers in 2018, with the Timbers essentially attacking him and calling him a liar in response at the conclusion of an investigation on the matter. Last year, Dio took some time away from the club towards the end of the regular season to enter the MLS Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health program, and while Dio’s privacy has been respected, it has been reported he did not enter the program due to any substance abuse issues.
Finally, Dio has battled injuries throughout his time with the club. He broke his foot this preseason, and spent less than 20 minutes on the field in competitive action this year, after coming off the bench in LAFC’s first game in Orlando at the MLS is Back Tournament, and re-injuring it, then returning to Los Angeles while the team remained in the tournament.
I think all in all, Dio was a mercurial player, unlike one who’s been with LAFC so far, and that’s likely to be his lasting legacy. He could certainly score goals, but off-field matters and injuries affected his ability to find a consistent run with the team.
As of publication of this story, LAFC have not confirmed Dio’s departure, so I expect they will let him go, but we won’t know for sure until they actually confirm it. The club did trade up to get the top slot in the Waiver Order on Wednesday, so it’s possible they made that move with a signing in mind, who could be a striker, but we’ll have to see how that all shakes out.
For now, thanks for the memories, Dio, and best of luck moving forward.
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