Yamil Asad will rejoin D.C. United for the 2020 season, club officials confirmed Tuesday, but after initially planning to play for the organization’s second-division team this fall, the Argentine attacker will work instead on a fitness program on his own.

Asad, 25, recently signed a two-year guaranteed contract with United, effective in January. Additionally, the team wanted him to sign a short-term deal with Loudoun United and use the remaining USL Championship schedule for conditioning purposes.

However, by the time he would have received a work visa and got into proper game shape, only a few Loudoun matches would have remained.

So Asad will return to Argentina this week and follow a club-specified workout regimen before reporting to training camp in January.

On loan to United last year from Argentine club Velez Sarsfield, Asad started 27 of 34 matches and posted nine goals and eight assists. United wanted to retain him, but the sides were unable to reach agreement on a loan renewal or transfer.

Asad returned to Sarsfield but played just once. His contract expired this summer, freeing him to sign anywhere. He was also in talks with a Greek club.

United retained his MLS rights and weighed whether to reacquire him before the roster deadline at the end of August. However, the team and Asad’s agent were far apart on terms and his inactivity concerned team officials about his capacity to make a late-season impact.

The sides narrowed the financial gap this month. One person close to the situation said United will use targeted allocation money, which means Asad will earn at least $530,000 without being classified as a designed player. His 2018 base salary was $436,363.

After reaching a deal with United two weeks ago, Asad reunited with the players in the Audi Field locker room after a friendly against Mexican side Puebla.

Next season, Asad is expected to compete for a starting position in midfield. His natural spot is on the left wing, but with roster uncertainty heading into the winter, he could end up in a different role.

Central midfielder Luciano Acosta is out of contract after this season and it remains unclear whether he will sign a new deal with United or seek opportunity elsewhere. Winger Lucas Rodriguez’s one-year loan from Argentina’s Estudiantes expires at the end of the year, though United might seek to retain him.

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