January is one of the periods when transfers are allowed. Rumours of moves abound and some even come to fruition. Occasionally a story stands out from the pack and such a one is that of Standard Liège’s Laurent Ciman.
Ciman is a regular member of Belgium’s international squad and is under contract to Standard until 2017. Despite this, Ciman is on the verge of moving to North American club, Montreal Impact (Impact de Montréal). His desire to move to the MLS (Major League Soccer) is not driven by money but for family reasons.
Ciman’s young daughter Nina is on the autism spectrum and her parents wish to live in Quebec, a province with an international reputation in the treatment of this condition. Standard Liège chairman Roland Duchâtelet, often criticised by the fans of the clubs he owns, is releasing Ciman from his contract. This will allow the move to go through without a hitch.
The management of Standard Liège deserve respect for allowing the player to leave the club on a free transfer and it is to be hoped that the Ciman family receive the support they need in their new home.