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De La Torre joins Dutch side Heracles Almelo


Luca De La Torre is making the move to the Dutch Eredivisie.

Heracles Almelo announced the signing of De La Torre on Thursday, acquiring him as a free transfer from recently promoted Premier League side Fulham. De La Torre inked a two-year deal with Heracles, with the club holding an option for an additional season.

“This club likes to play attractive football,” De La Torre. “I think that fits well with my style of play. I also had good conversations with manager Frank Wormuth about this. There was confidence in that. I can’t wait to contribute.”

The 22-year-old midfielder made 15 combined appearances between Fulham’s first team and Under-23 side last season. He scored five goals in nine appearances for Fulham II, while also appearing in the EFL Cup and FA Cup.

In total, De La Torre struggled to earn first team minutes in Scott Parker’s side, scoring one goal and adding two assists in 14 combined appearances over his five years with the club.

“Luca is a versatile player who has good technique and the necessary creativity,” Heracles technical director Tim Gilissen said. “As a flanker, he can play on both sides, but also as an attacking midfielder. He offers us additional options.”

De La Torre earned his only cap with the U.S. Men’s National Team in 2018 in a friendly with the Republic of Ireland. Prior to that, he’s made 37 combined appearances for several U.S. Youth National Teams.

Heracles Almelo finished eighth in the 18-team Eredivisie last season before the COVID-19 pandemic ended the campaign abruptly. De La Torre joins Sergino Dest, Chris Gloster, Alex Mendez, and Richie Ledezma as the latest American player to make the move to Holland.


  1. If you look at Heracles last season they used a four player rotation at LW, two of those players are gone and the two remaining were the least productive. The RW Van Der Water only went the full 90 in 7 of 20 starts. The AM Mauro Junior (went back to PSV not good for Ledezma). The replacement had a good season last year in the 2nd division but has been with 8 different clubs in the last five seasons. Almelo is a small city away from the bright lights and distractions of London, Luca should be able to concentrate on his football and if he’s good enough he’ll play regularly.

  2. The Van Wilder of Fulham’s youth setup finally leaves the nest. About time. I don’t expect much from the guy — as long as he outperforms Kyle Scott he can go home happy.

  3. “Luca is a versatile player who has good technique and the necessary creativity,” Heracles technical director Tim Gilissen said. “As a flanker, he can play on both sides, but also as an attacking midfielder. He offers us additional options…..”

    is not what you want to hear, before you even hit the field, when trying to become a starter and get your career to take off. he already signed in the wrong place.

    • I’m not sure I understand, I thought the point to going to Europe was you battle everyday for your spot and that’s what makes you better. How would going to a club that promises you a starting spot make you improve yourself.

      • I think IV is saying Luca seems like an option of the bench not a starter….I actually read it the same way…Hopefully he can get some PT. I think he should have left Fulham before this season. He should have been playing regularly this season….

      • He was a core U-17/U-20 pipeline guy seen as sufficiently promising within USSF where he got a senior NT cap barely playing first team ball (which I note some think would be a crazy idea for the much more talented Reyna). That was 3 years ago. He never transitioned into a club first team player, on a fairly tepid Fulham side. He hasn’t been capped since. That U20 momentum is wearing off and he’s in danger of becoming the next Zelalem type, touted at YNT, disappears as an adult. This was his chance to get out of Fulham but also find someplace who would start him. He got out of Fulham only for this coach on arrival to give faint praise, and basically say he’s a bench option across the midfield — in Holland no less — at a non name brand team. The club snob “opportunity to show what you have” is tautology at best — could be true anywhere between the top of Europe and some Fiji Beer League — and at worst ignores that smart players put themselves in positions to succeed. This one he finally escapes the hole he dug himself to start only to pick a destination where the coach says he’s ticketed to back up. He can of course change that, but who picks that change on purpose. And to be clear, at about 23-25 — where he will be when the next chapter plays out — they start writing off the careers of players who can’t get traction.

    • Few YT players ever make it to the MNT whether they go to Europe or not and that’s true across almost all countries. He got his cap because Sarachan was throwing out every available young player and MLS teams balked at releasing players in the middle of the season. I mean what is he supposed to do go to Denmark where he’ll be assured of starting because you trashed Haji Wright for doing that. If he can’t get on the field at Heracles he’s not good enough to play for the MNT. It’s not like Fulham wasn’t playing him because he’s American, he wasn’t good enough.
      No one thinks Reyna shouldn’t be playing for the MNT. Literally no one. Trying to compare Luca getting 13 mins in a friendly 5 years from the WC to Reyna going to the U17 WC instead of playing in the Nations League it’s ridiculous. Luca had 8 first team appearances before his first call up, Gio would have had none had he skipped the U17 WC to play against Canada and Cuba. A tournament that Gio was awful in by the way, as was everyone else on the team.

      • I get that only x% of U20 make the NT, not a ton, y% become solid pros, z% stay around as subs, q% end up out of the sport. But (a) this is an unusually open period for YNT to step up to MNT based on the old team ageing out and the generation after being sub-qualifying level. The percentages will be higher. Players like McKennie that I see as good but flawed can find footholds. Only with iterations will the level rise. And (b) I think that while talent and drive win out, a player can control his range of outcomes by location. Adu probably could have been a career MLS starter if he was more humble and less ambitious. You see where some players with Euro-struggles like Hyndman can find footing, where others like Zelalem falter. That does not necessarily track ideas of talent. Some of this, to me, is choices players make when they reboot. A player who finds his level and shows well sticks. A better player who loses passion or makes overambitious or money driven decisions may be done. Only the Pulisics at the very top exist in this club snob world where they are groomed and used like the world class future. Everyone else — including players less rated at those same teams — is fighting to stay on and move up the ladder. I think chance, attractiveness to a coach, fit to system, passion, physical attributes may matter as much as soccer ability once your soccer ability is judged less than elite. To me it becomes important to understand what you offer and who is best to give it. if you pick enough poor fits you may be just as gone as a donkey.

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