The LA Galaxy have brought in a much-needed reinforcement for the 2023 season, announcing on Monday the addition of defender Lucas Calegari on loan from Brazilian club Fluminense for 2023 with an option to purchase the contract. The deal has a reported option to purchase of around $2 million.
“We are pleased to announce Lucas as the newest addition to the LA Galaxy,” said LA Galaxy Head Coach and Sporting Director Greg Vanney in a team statement. “Lucas is a young and talented fullback with significant experience at a high level already. We look forward to his contributions to the success of the team and supporting his continued growth as a player.”
Calegari, 20, has spent his entire pro career to date at Fluminense, making his debut in Aug. 2020. He’s made 84 appearances since then across all competitions, including both the Copa Sudamericana and Copa Libertadores. He’s also played once for the Brazil U-17 national team.
With the Galaxy losing incumbent starting right back Julian Araujo officially earlier this month for his transfer to FC Barcelona, Calegari is a slightly younger player with a pretty good deal of experience who will likely be given the opportunity to take the starting job himself in short order. Kelvin Leerdam returns to the Galaxy squad this season, but he looks likely to be a reserve unless injuries or a lack of form or adjustment by Calegari force Greg Vanney’s hand. It may take a few games for the Brazilian to get his first start, but I think he’ll get a good opportunity over the course of this season to get starter’s minutes, and if he finds his footing quickly, that position will be successfully addressed. Welcome aboard, Lucas!
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