Work visa secured. Debut next?
LA Galaxy midfielder Riqui Puig, after getting the proper paperwork approved, could debut Friday night when the five-time MLS Cup champions host Seattle Sounders FC in a pivotal Western Conference match at Dignity Health Sports Park (10 pm ET | ESPN, ESPN Deportes).
Puig, LA’s marquee summer signing, joined on deadline day (Aug. 4) from FC Barcelona, signing through the 2025 season upon leaving the LaLiga powerhouse side.
Puig, 23, is poised to slot into LA's No. 10 role in front of a midfield base of Mark Delgado and Gaston Brugman. He’s expected to link an attack that features striker Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and wingers Kevin Cabral and Douglas Costa as Designated Players. U22 Initiative striker Dejan Joveljic has been a key piece, too.
“His style of play, where he comes from, the fact he is a hyper-aware player, I think the integration with other people isn’t going to be really difficult,” head coach Greg Vanney said last week. “It’s something that can happen quickly because I think he fits the profile of the guys we like to have in that position and guys are kind of similar to him.”
The midfielder had two goals and three assists in 57 appearances (15 starts) across all competitions with Barca, once a rising star from their famed La Masia academy.
Puig would enter the Galaxy’s matchday squad at a pivotal time, as they sit sixth in the West standings with 10 games to go (10W-11L-3D; 33 points). They’ve made the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs once from 2017-21.