TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Signing

Atlanta United have signed defender Juan José Purata on loan from Liga MX side Tigres UANL for the remainder of the 2022 MLS campaign, the club announced Tuesday. The deal includes both a purchase option and chance to extend the loan for 2023.

The 24-year-old Mexico native will occupy an international roster spot and be available for selection when the MLS Secondary Transfer Window opens on July 7. That timeline leaves him possibly debuting in Atlanta’s home match on July 9 vs. Austin FC.

“Juan is a talented center back with an extremely high ceiling,” VP and technical director Carlos Bocanegra said in a release. “Given our current situation, we felt the need to bring in another central defender. An opportunity arose to acquire him on loan, and we’re pleased to be able to bring him into the group. Once integrated and registered, we’re looking forward to having him compete immediately.”

Purata joins Atlanta amid a rash of injuries, including a season-ending Achilles rupture sustained by US men’s national team center back Miles Robinson. Often, ATLUTD have fielded homegrown George Campbell and Alan Franco in the heart of defense, as well as Alex DeJohn.

Purata has made 34 appearances in his career with Tigres, including 26 in Liga MX play. He debuted for their first team in 2017 and scored his professional lone goal in 2020 Concacaf Champions League play.

Atlanta are in their first full season under head coach Gonzalo Pineda, who spent much of his professional career playing in Mexico. That network helped secure Purata, as well as ex-Chivas goalkeeper Raúl Gudiño.