Major League Soccer has terminated Portland Timbers forward Brian Fernandez's contract. The league announced the move Friday.
Fernandez has also been removed from Portland's roster.
Fernandez, 25, was acquired by the Timbers from Liga MX side Necaxa back on May 6 for a club record fee of just under $10 million. The Argentine made an instant impact, scoring eight goals in his first nine league appearances. But he cooled off thereafter as he was reportedly sidelined by illness as well as a red card he received in the Timbers' penultimate game of the season against Sporting Kansas City.
On Oct. 7, he voluntarily entered the league's Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health ("SABH") Program. All told, Fernandez scored 15 goals and added one assist in 20 league and cup appearances this season.
Fernandez has previously battled substance abuse during his career. In 2015, while on the books of Racing Club, he was suspended for more than a year by CONMEBOL following multiple failed drug tests in which he tested positive for cocaine. Upon his return, he was loaned out to the likes of Sarmiento, Metz and Union La Calera, before securing a move to Necaxa.
His time in Aguascalientes proved highly productive, with the Argentine scoring 12 goals in 15 games during the 2019 Clausura. Overall, Fernandez scored 18 goals in 32 league and cup appearances.
Portland's postseason run ended in the first round with a loss at Real Salt Lake.