Forcing his way into the Colombian National Team's starting lineup was the easy part for Carlos Valdes. Now the defender will have to keep himself in the picture as Colombia is headed toward the final stretch of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Reports out of Colombia have indicated that Valdes has chosen to pursue a loan with his former club Santa Fe in order to keep in form and provide Jose Peckerman, the Colombian head coach, with a reason to select him for any friendlies prior to the start of the 2013 Major League Soccer regular season.
Santa Fe's president, César Pastrana, has told Colombian media that he has talked with Valdes himself and that the two sides were close to an agreement, despite what other sources had to say about the matter.
"Until now the players contracted are for the defense and we hope to close this part of the team with Valdes," Pastrana said. "Yesterday I met with Valdes and there is a great possibility that he will be with us, even though if we don't arrive at an agreement with him we still have a competitive group."
Any loan that would send Valdes to Santa Fe would most likely cover only the time before the start of the upcoming MLS season.
"It is not asured yet," Pasión AlbiRoja wrote on its Facebook page, "but Carlos Valdés could return to Santa Fe to face the Copa Libertadores 2013, as it seem the only thing that is missing is serious authorization of MLS, since the player and President Pastrana have already met.
The Union told the Brotherly Game that they had no comment when asked for a response to this article.
(Translations with help from Jon Marks)