WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 2, 2024) - D.C. United have signed Finland National Team midfielder Matti Peltola as a Young Designated Player after acquiring Discovery Priority from Minnesota United for $50,000 in 2024 General Allocation Money (GAM). The Black-and-Red paid an additional $25,000 in 2024 GAM to Minnesota after signing Peltola. Peltola signed a four-year contract through 2027 with an option in 2028.
"Matti is a bright young talent who had significant interest around Europe,” Ally Mackay, D.C. United General Manager and Chief Soccer Officer, said. “He’s a young midfielder who has already played considerable professional minutes with the Finland National Team and has Europa League experience with HJK Helsinki at just 21 years old. He has an exceptional passing range and vision in the midfield combined with a defensive intuition on the other side of the ball. He’s mature beyond his years on the field and will be a great addition to bolster our roster going into 2024. We’re looking forward to integrating him with the team and welcoming him to the District.”
Peltola joins D.C. United after spending the 2023 season with Finnish first division side, HJK Helsinki. Last year, Peltola made appearances in the UEFA Champions League qualifiers, Europa League, and Europa Conference League, recording one assist in eight appearances. During the 2022 season, he scored two goals and recorded three assists in 38 appearances playing in four UEFA Champions League qualifiers and six Europa League matches . The 21-year-old Finnish midfielder started his professional career with HJK Helsinki academy where he featured for both the U-19 and reserves team before making his professional debut with the first team on Oct. 19, 2019. Peltola recorded his first assist for HJK Helsinki on March 18, 2023 in the semi-finals of the Finnish League Cup over Kuopion Palloseura. He then scored his first goal for the club on Jan. 25, 2020 in a 3-0 win over Turun Palloseura, in the Suomen Cup. Over three seasons, Peltola has appeared in 96 matches scoring three goals and recording four assists on his way to winning three consecutive Finnish Championships from 2021-2023, one Finnish Cup in 2020, and one Finnish League Cup in 2023.
Peltola has played for the Finnish youth national team since 2018 at the U-16, U-17, U-18 and U-21 levels. He recently made his senior debut on Jan. 12, 2023 in a 1-0 international friendly loss to Estonia and has also been featured in four of Finland’s 2023 European Qualifiers. In total, Peltola has appeared in five matches for the Finnish senior national team.
Birthplace: Espoo, Finland
Weight: 154 lbs.
Status: International - Young Designated Player
Transaction: D.C. United have signed Finland National Team midfielder Matti Peltola as a Young Designated Player after acquiring Discovery Priority from Minnesota United for $50,000 in 2024 General Allocation Money (GAM). The Black-and-Red paid an additional $25,000 in 2024 GAM to Minnesota after signing Peltola. Peltola signed a four-year contract through 2027 with an option in 2028.
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