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Atlanta United Transfers Thiago Almada for MLS-record Transfer Fee to Eagle Football

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Atlanta United announced Saturday it has transferred midfielder Thiago Almada to Botafogo of Eagle Football Holdings for a league-record transfer fee. The transaction opens a Designated Player spot on the club’s 2024 roster. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“We spent more than a year recruiting Thiago to join Atlanta United and during that process we agreed that our club could provide a great platform to showcase his abilities and he would have the opportunity to continue his development until the time was right for him to move on to the next challenge,” Vice President and Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra said. “We’re proud of what Thiago was able to accomplish in a short period of time, which includes debuting for the Argentine National Team, winning the 2022 FIFA World Cup and winning a pair of individual MLS awards – Newcomer of the Year and Young Player of the Year. His success is something we’re all proud of and a ton of credit is owed to our scouting department, in addition to everyone who has worked with him at the club. Our team has been prepared for this move and we will look to immediately reinvest in the team during the upcoming Summer Transfer Window.”

Almada joined Atlanta prior to the 2022 season and started 74 of his 79 MLS regular season and playoff appearances, recording 24 goals and 34 assists. In 2022, the Argentine midfielder was honored as MLS Newcomer of the Year.) after leading the squad in assists (12) and finishing third on the team in goals (six), in addition to being named to the MLS Team of the Week five times. In 2023, Almada finished third in MLS MVP voting after a standout second season, earning a spot in the 2023 MLS Best XI, being named 2023 MLS Young Player of the Year and an MLS All-Star after tallying 11 goals and a league-leading 19 assists. Almada, 23, became the first active MLS player to win a FIFA World Cup as he was part of the Argentina squad that won the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Major League Soccer’s Secondary Transfer Window opens Thursday, July 18, and closes Wednesday, Aug. 14.

Eagle Football is a family of global football organizations including Botafogo of Brazil’s Série A. Other clubs under Eagle Football include Olympique Lyon of France’s Ligue 1 and Crystal Palace of England’s Premier League.

Atlanta United (6-9-6, 24 points) returns to MLS Regular Season play Saturday, July 6 against Real Salt Lake at America First Field (9:30 p.m. ET, MLS Season Pass on Apple TV, 92.9 The Game, La Mejor).

Transaction: Atlanta United transfers midfielder Thiago Almada to Botafogo for an undisclosed fee on July 6, 2024.

Atlanta United roster (as of July 6, 2024)
Goalkeepers (3): Josh Cohen, Brad Guzan, Quentin Westberg  
Defenders (10): Luis Abram, Pedro Amador, Noah Cobb, Matt Edwards, Stian Gregersen, Ronald Hernández, Brooks Lennon, Efraín Morales, Caleb Wiley, Derrick Williams
Midfielders (9): Nick Firmino, Jay Fortune, Saba Lobjanidze, Dax McCarty, Edwin Mosquera, Tristan Muyumba, Bartosz Slisz, Adyn Torres, Tyler Wolff
Forwards (4): Luke Brennan, Daniel Ríos, Xande Silva, Jamal Thiaré    

On loan from CD Guadalajara  

Loaned Out for 2024 season: Franco Ibarra (Rosario Central, ARG), Santiago Sosa (Racing Club, ARG), Erik Centeno (ATL UTD 2), Aiden McFadden (Louisville City FC).

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