MLS: LAFC Has Acquired a Free Agent Cristian Tello

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According to a club announcement, Cristian Tello, a free agent forward, was signed by LAFC to a deal through 2022 with club options for 2023 and 2024.

Before the MLS Roster Freeze Date on September 2, LAFC’s overhaul of its last third received a further boost when the Supporters’ Shield leaders revealed on Friday that they had signed forward Cristian Tello.

LAFC has continued to make signings outside of the MLS transfer season. After receiving his P1 visa and international transfer certificate, Tello will take a spot on the international roster (ITC).

Tello, 31, joined LAFC after five seasons with Real Betis in Spain’s La Liga. The native of Sabadell, Spain, has had a fruitful career in Europe, playing for Real Betis, Barcelona, Porto (Portugal), and Fiorentina (Italy, Serie A) (La Liga).

Tello participated in 21 UEFA Champions League games throughout his career with Barcelona and Porto, scoring six goals. Additionally, he made 17 appearances for Real Betis and Fiorentina in the Europa League.

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Cristian Tello
Christian Tello in action for FC Porto

Since graduating from the Barcelona and Espanyol academies, Tello has participated in approximately 200 La Liga matches.

He has also made appearances while on loan at Fiorentina and Porto in Portugal and Italy. Internationally, Tello played in the London 2012 Summer Olympics and received one cap for Spain in 2013.

This summer, LAFC has added Tello and Welsh superstar Gareth Bale to its roster as free agents, as well as re-signing Carlos Vela to a new contract and bringing in Denis Bouanga from France’s Saint-Étienne.

Cristian Tello
Christian Tello in Barcelona shirt

Both of these players have designated player (DP) status. They all combined with Cristian Arango and Kwadwo Opoku to produce what is probably the strongest and deepest attacking group in MLS.

As the first team to secure a spot in the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for 2022, LAFC is also on course to surpass the New England Revolution’s (73) previous single-season points record.

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Tello, a graduate of the renowned La Masia Youth Academy, played for RSD Espanyol and Barcelona throughout his formative years. Tello debuted for Barcelona in November 2011 and made his La Liga debut on January 28, 2012.

Cristian Tello
Christian Tello celebrating against Real Madrid

Tello’s LA Manager and Co-President’s reaction:

According to LAFC co-president and general manager John Thorrington, Cristian is a dangerous attacker and a wonderful fit for what he and his colleagues are doing at LAFC.

“He has represented some of the top clubs in the world and has excelled under extreme duress, such as in the Champions League”, Thorrington added.

“As we continue to strive towards achieving our ultimate goal of winning championships, we are thrilled to welcome him, his wife, and his family to Los Angeles.”

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