22-year-old Costa Rican international to join Nashville SC for 2020 Major League Soccer season
NASHVILLE (Sep. 06, 2019) – Nashville Soccer Club announced today it has signed Costa Rican international Randall Leal to a Major League Soccer contract, pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC) and P-1 Visa. The 22-year-old attacking midfielder will remain with his current club, Deportivo Saprissa, until Jan. 2020. Nashville SC will decide whether Leal will be signed as a Designated Player or using Targeted Allocation Money ahead of the 2020 MLS Roster Compliance date.
“Randall is an exciting young attacking midfielder with bags of potential,” said Nashville SC General Manager Mike Jacobs. “He has the ability to influence matches in a variety of ways and has demonstrated that caliber on both the domestic and international stage.”
“I am very excited and honored to join Nashville SC, and I cannot wait to get there and start working hard for the club,” said Leal. “I want to make a difference on and off the field as I continue to hopefully grow both as a player and as a person, and Nashville offers the level of ambition and eagerness to do things right that will allow me to accomplish both goals.”
Currently playing as a left winger for Saprissa, the versatile midfielder has found success in both flanks of the field as well as in playing centrally. In 38 appearances in all competitions for the club since joining in Aug. 2018, Leal has contributed with six goals and six assists. His most recent one, this rocket to the top right corner on the 80th minute, gave Saprissa a 2-1 victory over archrival LD Alajuelense on Aug. 11.
An energetic and tenacious playmaker, Leal made his professional debut with Costa Rica’s First Division side Belén F.C. in Oct. 2013 at age 16, scoring his first goal just a few months later in Jan. 2014. He participated in a total of four goals in 23 matches (1 goal, 2 assists), before moving on to Belgium in 2015 where he played in 19 matches for KV Mechelen.
At the international level, Leal has become one of the elite young players in CONCACAF. Since making his national team debut with Costa Rica on Sep. 7, 2018, almost a year ago to date, the quick and crafty dribbler has accumulated 11 caps as he helped Costa Rica reach the Quarterfinals of the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup. Leal and Costa Rica will be back in action tonight when they meet Uruguay in a friendly match at 9 p.m. CST at the National Stadium of Costa Rica.
Come Jan. 2020, Leal will join recently announced Designated Player Hany Mukhtar, as well as Panamanian leader Aníbal Godoy, Ghanaian international David Accam, U.S. Men’s Youth international Derrick Jones, English forward Cameron Lancaster and Mexican youth international forward Daniel Ríos.
Join Nashville SC in its inaugural season in MLS by becoming a Season Ticket Member here or by calling a club representative at 615-750-8800.
Transaction: Nashville SC signs Randall Leal from Deportivo Saprissa. Leal, who will occupy an international roster spot, will remain with Saprissa until Jan. 2020. Nashville SC will decide whether Leal will be signed as a Designated Player or using Targeted Allocation Money ahead of the 2020 MLS Roster Compliance date.
RANDALL LEAL ARLEY
Birthdate: Jan. 14, 1997
Birthplace: San José, Costa Rica
Hometown: San José, Costa Rica
Nationality: Costa Rican
Last club: Deportivo Saprissa
How Acquired: Signed by Nashville SC from Deportivo Saprissa as on Sep. 06, 2019.
About Nashville SC Nashville SC is Nashville’s professional soccer club and is in the midst of its second season in the USL Championship. The club will move to Major League Soccer in 2020. For more information, visit NashvilleSC.com and follow the club at @NashvilleSC on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Spotify.