D.C. United have acquired Argentine defender Leonardo Jara on a season-long loan from Boca Juniors in the Superliga Argentina de Fútbol pending receipt of his P1 Visa and ITC.
“We are thrilled to add a defender of Leonardo's quality and pedigree ahead of the 2019 season," Dave Kasper, United General Manager and VP of Soccer Operations, said. "Acquiring an outside back was high on our priority list this offseason. Leonardo has good defensive instincts and also has the range and ability to get forward and add a dimension to our attack. He’s made over 150 appearances in the Argentine Primera División, and he was the starting right back for Boca Juniors' strong run to the 2018 Copa Libertadores final."
Jara scored two goals and recorded six assists in 71 appearances across all competitions with Boca Juniors after his acquisition from Club Estudiantes De La Plata on Jan. 1, 2016. The defender made his debut for the Blue and Gold in a 1-0 loss against Racing Club in a Primera División fixture on Feb. 28, 2016 and scored his first goal for the club in a 6-2 win over Deportivo Cali on April 21, 2016 in the Copa Libertadores. During his time at Boca Juniors, Jara helped the team win back-to-back Argentine Primera División titles in the 2016/17 and 2017/18 seasons. Jara played his last match for Boca Juniors against historic rivals, River Plate, on Dec. 9, 2018 in the second leg of the Copa Libertadores final.
The 27-year-old started his career in the youth academy of Argentina’s Club Estudiantes De La Plata. After rising through the ranks, Jara made his professional debut for his boyhood club against Club Atlético Colón on Nov. 25, 2009 at the age of 18. Jara went on to score three goals and record two assists in 146 appearances across all competitions for Estudiantes. He scored his first professional goal in a 1-1 draw on April 18, 2015 against Club Atlético Rosario Central.
Jara has experience playing with midfielders Luciano Acosta and new offseason acquisition Lucas Rodríguez during the 2015 season at Estudiantes. All three players were on the roster during that year and shared the field 11 times that season.
Player: Leonardo Jara
Birthplace: Corrientes, Argentina
Previous Club: Boca Juniors (Superliga Argentina)
Transaction: United have acquired Leonardo Jara on a season-long loan from Boca Juniors (Argentina) pending receipt of his P1 Visa and ITC.