BRIAN SCIARETTA - Monday, August 27, 2012
Unable to stay with Liverpool due to work permit regulations, US Under-20 forward Villyan Bijev has will be heading out on loan to IK Start for the rest of the Norwegian season.
"I can confirm that [Villyan Bijev] is on loan until 31.12.2012," Start press officer told YA on Monday. "He came today and will get shirt number 20."
Under the terms of the deal, Bijev will play with Start the rest of the Norwegian season which runs through November. A source close to the deal said there is no option to buy but if the loan works out the rest of this season, it's possible that Bijev could return to Start for the 2013 Norwegian season.
Bijev, 19, was born in Bulgaria but moved to California when he was a young child. Last summer, Bijev signed a multi-year contract with Liverpool FC after a successful trial but he has not been able to play with the club. Last season he played with German club Fortuna Dusseldorf on loan.
Due the transitional nature of Bulgaria in the EU, Bijev is not entitled to a UK work permit through his Bulgarian passport but that is expected to change in 2014.
Bijev has been a regular with the US U-20 team this cycle as they build towards World Cup qualifying early next year.