LAFC Adds Another Young Designated Player
The Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) announced today that midfielder André Horta has signed as the Club’s third Designated Player from SL Benfica of Portugal’s First Division. The 21-year-old occupies an international spot and will be added to the roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC) and P-1 Visa.
“André is a player we identified quite some time ago as someone we felt would be the right fit for LAFC,” said LAFC EVP of Soccer Operations and General Manager John Thorrington. “We are grateful for the support of ownership, and the acquisition of André is yet another statement of the type of club and team we are building. It is rare, if not unprecedented, for a player of his age, pedigree, and options to join MLS, and we know he will make our city and fans proud.”
A promising youth international for the Portuguese national team, Horta joins LAFC after spending his first four professional seasons in Portugal’s top division. While on loan at Braga this season, Horta appeared in 15 league matches, tallying one goal and six assists. In all, he saw action in 23 games, including five of the club’s Europa League matches.
Last season, Horta tallied a goal and an assist in 10 league matches for Benfica, while also appearing in the team’s first two UEFA Champions League group games. Horta played an instrumental role in helping the club win the domestic treble after lifting the Premier League, Cup of Portugal and Super Cup trophies.
“André is a technically gifted player with enormous versatility,” said LAFC Head Coach Bob Bradley. “He is young and dynamic, and with his experience in Portugal we believe he will continue to develop into a top-class player.”
The 5-foot-9 midfielder spent eight years in Benfica’s youth system prior to joining Vitória Setúbal in 2012. He would make his first team debut on December 12, 2014 and go on to appear in 42 matches across two seasons at Vitória, registering two goals and four assists.
Internationally, Horta has made 23 appearances for the Portuguese youth international teams, tallying his first international goal in a friendly against Japan’s U-23 side on May 23, 2016. Horta scored his second goal in a 4-2 friendly win over Switzerland’s U-21 on March 27.