Austin FC have acquired midfielder Jhojan Valencia on a permanent transfer from Colombian side Deportivo Cali and signed the 25-year-old through 2024 with an option for 2025, the club announced Thursday.

Valencia joins the Verde & Black after leading Deportivo Cali to the 2021 Colombian league title and will occupy an international spot.

Valencia will most likely feature in a defensive midfield role for head coach Josh Wolff.

"Jhojan is a young, talented midfielder with great defensive instincts and an eye for the ball,” sporting director Claudio Reyna said in a release. “His presence will add a new dimension to our midfield and free up some of our more attack-minded players to get forward and create chances. We look forward to welcoming him to Austin.”

Valencia has made 73 appearances across all competitions for Deportivo Cali in his home city, registering one goal and one assist en route to two Colombian first division titles – the first league championship coming in 2015 during his debut season with Cali and the second in 2021.

In between, he spent loan spells at Cúcuta Deportivo in 2017 and Unión Magdalena in 2018 and 2019, helping Unión win promotion to the Colombian top flight for the 2019 season. In total, Valencia made 163 professional appearances in Colombia from 2015-21.

“I’m very excited to come to Austin,” Valencia said in a release. “It’s such an amazing city, with great support for the club and everything needed to compete for trophies. I want to thank Claudio and Josh for their support, and I look forward to all of the great moments ahead.”