Columbus Crew chief sends classy message to Aidan Morris after Middlesbrough transfer

Head coach of Columbus Crew Wilfried Nancy speaks with Aidan Morris
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

Columbus Crew general manager Issa Tall has sent a classy message to Aidan Morris following his transfer to Middlesbrough, describing him as a 'role model'.

The 22-year-old has signed from Crew for Boro on a four-year deal with Boro believed to be paying somewhere in between £3-4 million. Columbus also confirmed in their communications that they have inserted a future sell-on fee clause in the deal, though the percentage they'd be due is undisclosed.

The deal was a significant one for Boro this summer as they sought to bolster Michael Carrick's central midfield options. Their first-choice target, Morris is someone they've been tracking for around 18 months as he emerged as a star in the Columbus side, helping them to two MLS Cups and making over 100 appearances despite his age.

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Morris is actually from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but moved to Columbus while in high school to join the Crew academy and he eventually rose through their ranks to make his debut in 2020 before becoming a first-team mainstay two years ago. A huge fan favourite, his impact has been praised by Tall after his exit was confirmed.

The Crew general manager said: “Watching Aidan’s growth as a player and person during his time at the Crew has been a true privilege, and we greatly appreciate his dedication to the club and our city. Aidan has always been focused on learning and improving, and he’s an exceptional role model for our Academy players.

"We are proud of what Aidan accomplished individually and with our club as he made a significant impact in the Crew’s history. He always aspired to play in Europe and earned the opportunity, and we look forward to him further displaying his form and character as he joins Middlesbrough.

“This is an important moment for both Aidan and our club. We pride ourselves on having a player pathway in place that identifies and cultivates talent. In addition to his personal commitment, Aidan’s transfer is a credit to the entire club’s efforts to developing players who can compete at a high level.”

Head coach Wilfried Nancy, often credited for the midfielder's rapid growth in the last 18 months, expressed similar sentiments recently. Nancy said: "This is a good example of what the club wants to do. Develop young players, and also help them to get better. And after that, see what we do in the future with them. So, this is exactly the mentality that we want ... this is the vision."