Transfer Tracker

Houston Dynamo sign attacker Iván Franco from Paraguay's Club Libertad

Ivan Franco to HOU


Houston Dynamo FC have their first overseas signing under new head coach Ben Olsen, announcing Saturday they’ve signed attacker Iván Franco from Paraguayan top-flight powerhouse Club Libertad.

The 22-year-old joins Houston through the 2023 season and used to be teammates with striker and fellow Paraguayan international Sebastián Ferreira at Club Libertad. Ferreira signed last winter on a club-record deal as a Designated Player.

“Iván is an exciting young attacking talent who we hope can flourish in our environment in Houston,” Dynamo general manager Pat Onstad said in a release.

“ … At his best, Ivan is a difference maker who can play across the front three attacking positions, and we can’t wait to work with him in Houston.”

Franco has spent his entire professional career with Club Libertad after coming through their academy, scoring 10 goals and contributing 16 assists across 116 games. He’s played in nearly 30 combined matches across the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana, the two premier club competitions in South America, plus won two Paraguayan Primera División titles and the 2019 Copa Paraguay.

Franco made his international debut in a September 2019 friendly, but hasn’t been called up since. Former LA Galaxy manager Guillermo Barros Schelotto currently oversees La Albirroja.

Houston are entering their first season under Olsen, who’s back coaching in MLS after spending a decade leading D.C. United. It’s also their second offseason under Onstad’s leadership, continuing to remold the squad.

The Dynamo are chasing their first Audi MLS Cup Playoffs appearance since 2017. The Western Conference club will begin their 2023 campaign on Feb. 25 at FC Cincinnati (7:30 pm ET | MLS Season Pass).