Atlanta United appear to be on the verge of landing midfielder Hector Villalba from Argentine club San Lorenzo, with ESPN’s Taylor Twellman tweeting on Thursday morning that he expects the club to announce the signing of the 21-year-old to a Young Designated Player contract within the next 24 hours.
Expect @ATLUTD to announce Hector Villalba as a new signing (young DP) in the next 24 hours. Great start from Atlanta!!!— Taylor Twellman (@TaylorTwellman) July 21, 2016
Villalba has been linked to Atlanta several times over the past month, with San Lorenzo even announcing last week that they had sold the player to MLS. If signed, Villalba will presumably be sent on loan for the remainder of 2016 – Liga MX club Tijuana is reportedly an option – before joining Atlanta ahead of their debut MLS season in 2017.
A native of Buenos Aires, Villalba has spent his entire career with San Lorenzo, coming up through the youth ranks before turning pro in 2012. He’s made 89 appearances for the club in the Argentine Primera and was a key part of the San Lorenzo team that won the 2014 Copa Libertadores, a group that also featured Montreal Impact attacker Ignacio Piatti and New York Red Bulls attacker Gonzalo Veron.
Atlanta currently have six players – Kenwyne Jones, Andrew Carleton, Chris McCann, Jeffrey Otoo, Junior Burgos and Alexandros Tabakis – on their roster.