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Portland Timbers 'moving on' from pursuit of Tigres Eduardo Vargas - source

Ahead of the 2019 season, coaches from around MLS share their views on how to define success in the evolving league.

The Portland Timbers are prepared to move on from their pursuit of Tigres forward Eduardo Vargas, a club source with direct knowledge of the negotiations told ESPN FC.

The Timbers' bid for Vargas was thought to include a transfer fee just under $10 million, but the source indicated that Portland's offer was actually $8.5m including incentives.

The source added that Tigres has a higher valuation of the player, but are keen to move Vargas, and could circle back to the Timbers if they decide they want to get a deal done. For now, Portland isn't counting on that ahead of the MLS transfer window closing on May 7.

"We're moving on to other targets," said the source who asked not to be identified.

Landing a designated player at the striker position has been Portland's top priority this offseason. The Timbers had previously been linked with Ezequiel Ponce - currently on loan to AEK Athens from Serie A side Roma - as well as Vargas' club teammate Julian Quińones.

Portland made a $7m offer for Quińones in late January, but that was turned down with no counter-offer. Now it looks like Portland will look elsewhere.

Vargas, 29, has been with Tigres since early 2017. In that time he has scored 27 goals in 92 league and cup appearances. Vargas got his start in 2006 in his native Chile with Cobreloa, before making his name with Universidad de Chile.

From 2010-11, Vargas scored 32 goals in 79 league and cup appearances. Those performances caught the eye of Napoli, who acquired the striker in 2012, but Vargas struggled in Italy and spent most of his time on loan with Gremio, Valencia and Queens Park Rangers. He spent parts of two seasons with 1899 Hoffenheim, but scored just twice in 30 league and cup appearances.

Vargas has been more prolific at international level, making 82 appearances for Chile, scoring 35 goals. He was part of two Copa America-winning sides in 2015 and 2016, and was the top scorer at both tournaments, sharing the title in 2015 with Peru's Paolo Guerrero.

In the 2016 Copa America Centenario he memorably scored four goals during Chile's 7-0 quarterfinal rout of Mexico.


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