Los Angeles Football Club made it official on Thursday, signing Uruguayan teenager Diego Rossi on a transfer from Peñarol and signing him to a young Designated Player contract.
Rossi, 19, has spent his short professional career to date with Peñarol, one of the powerhouses in Uruguay. Making his debut in 2015, he established himself in particular this season with the club, scoring seven goals in 24 league appearances and adding three more in cup competitions this calendar year, while winning the domestic league title with the club. He is also a youth international for Uruguay and turned some heads in the most recent South American Under-20 Championship, which Uruguay won.
“We are incredibly excited to announce the signing of Diego Rossi,” said LAFC General Manager and Executive Vice President of Soccer Operations John Thorrington in a statement. “We believe he will be a great asset on and off the field for LAFC and MLS. Diego is a player with great promise and international interest. It is another powerful statement from LAFC and our league that Diego is choosing to take the next step of his career in Los Angeles.”
Rossi’s status as a young Designated Player would presumably mean LAFC believe he’s capable of being an immediate contributor in MLS. While the track record of young DPs has been about the same as Designated Players overall, teams don’t sign speculative prospects to DP deals. With the young DP status Rossi will offer more roster budget relief than a regular DP for LAFC, but expect to see him penciled in for significant minutes in 2018.
The addition of Rossi comes alongside the signings of Carlos Vela as the first Designated Player and Omar Gaber on loan in the past few months, as well as the intraleague acquisitions of Walker Zimmerman, Laurent Ciman, Tyler Miller, Latif Blessing and Marco Urena this week.
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