Just as some fish migrate upstream annually, a certain player is rumored to return to his former home of Philadelphia.
Of all of the possible transfer rumors to develop this offseason, the most unlikely one would always involve Carlos Ruiz. According to multiple people and sites in Guatemala, it may not be so improbable.
After multiple tweets from individual accounts without much credibility, a Guatemalan sports radio program devoted to Ruiz's former club, Municipal, stepped into the fray.
"Carlos Humberto "El Pescado" Ruiz in talks to return to MLS, the team + interested is the Philadelphia Union," Pasión Roja tweeted.
The signing of Ruiz would bring in a veteran striker with finishing ability, the type of player that head coach John Hackworth has said the Union would pursue during this offseason.
"That young group of attackers, they can only get better," Hackworth said during his last press conference of the year. "We're looking to bring someone in to help them and the team get better."
Ruiz's relationship with the fan base was cited by former head coach Peter Nowak as the basis of his departure, making any potential transfer back to Philadelphia highly questionable. Nowak went so far as to directly blame the fans for why the team chose to sell Ruiz to Mexican second division club Tiburones Rojos de Veracruz.
"There were a lot of fans, even in the stands here," Nowak said after the Union's loss to the Colorado Rapids on July 30, "that have a pre-bias towards Carlos, and made some bad comments about him being a diver, or this, or that, not working hard enough, and all these little things."
"It was getting tiring to all of us, and we accepted an offer from a club. Carlos is no longer going to be with us. We are finalizing stuff right now, it's probably going to take a couple of weeks."
Six goals in 14 games weren't enough to placate portions of the fans in the stands who felt the Guatemalan international did not put in enough work ethic on the field.
His scoring touch got even sharper upon his move to Veracruz, where he scored 10 goals in 19 games while also contributing three goals in four World Cup 2014 qualifiers to the Guatemalan national team. A team in need of consistent scoring, and a veteran offensive presence, may just overlook a controversial exit for an equally controversial player.
However, a Honduran team may prevent that chance of Ruiz's reestablishment in the roster of the Union. Ruiz is "sought by Real Espana de Honduras," ESPN, out of Central America, reported yesterday.