D.C. United ended 2018 on a high note, finalizing a deal for Argentinian playmaker Lucas Rodríguez to join the Black-and-Red for the 2019 season. The New Year’s Eve announcement excited fans and showed the club's commitment to continue building on an exhilarating 2018 season.
“I can’t wait a second longer to be able to play at Audi Field,” Rodríguez said. “I believe this is a great club. I’ve seen the team play and I am looking forward to joining [them].”
Rodríguez brings an impressive résumé to United. Since making his breakthrough into the Estudiantes first team in the 2014/15 season, he has featured in 90 matches for the Argentine club, including 12 in the Copa Libertadores, South America's historic club competition. In his five seasons with the Primera División club, Rodríguez recorded eight goals and five assists. A dynamic midfielder, Rodríguez is looking forward to showing Black-and-Red fans what he can bring to the team.
“I believe here [in MLS] the game is different, but it’s beginning to have more South American players,” Rodríguez said. “The team has fellow Argentinians and I hope to be able to understand things well with them and give my best.”
The 2018 season saw the Argentinian members of the Black-and-Red contribute heavily, with countrymen Yamil Asad and Luciano Acosta recording a combined total of 19 goals and 24 assists. The two midfielders were instrumental to the United attack, particularly Acosta and his thrilling partnership with forward Wayne Rooney. Rodríguez and Acosta were both members of the 2014/15 Estudiantes first team, with Acosta on loan from Boca Juniors.
“I was lucky enough to be able to play with Acosta for some time with Estudiantes,” Rodríguez said. “I felt very comfortable and I hope to be able to add myself to Wayne’s style. I know they have been doing really well together and I hope to play at their level as well.”
Rodríguez joins a United team hungry to build off of an impressive run to the 2018 MLS Cup Playoffs and he is ready to contribute however he can.
“I come with the idea of being able to bring the best of me... to fit within any position the coach wants me to be in,” Rodríguez said. “When I got word that the club was interested in me . . . it was a beautiful moment and a special occasion, I hope to be able to meet the expectations.”