“He is an exciting and dynamic attacking player who creates and scores goals,” said Dave Kasper, general manager and vice president of football operations for United, in a written statement. “What has really impressed us is his commitment to the team. He is a versatile and brave two-way player who plays with a real pulse. “
Flores, 25, played a decisive role in qualifying Peru for the 2018 World Cup, which ended a 36-year drought. He started three group matches in the tournament organized by Russia, then, last summer, he helped Peru advance to the final of the Copa América, the South American championship.
Flores typically plays on the left wing, a position in which United is already well stocked, but also has experience in the middle and right. At the moment, he plans to start in a central role. But as the organization continues to look for additional players, Flores could fulfill a variety of functions.
“It’s good to have attacking players with versatility,” coach Ben Olsen said in an interview. “He has certainly spent a few minutes as a central player in Mexico. We will see where it fits best for us. It is no secret that we are looking for another attacker “to compete for an initial job.
Flores and midfielder Paul Arriola are designated players, a term used for those who have salaries beyond the MLS budget guidelines. United has a more available DP slot, which you could fill immediately, during the summer transfer window or nothing at all.
The acquisition of Arriola by United in August 2017 was the previous highest mark for a transfer fee ($ 3.25 million to the Mexican club Tijuana).
As game creator, Flores would replace Luciano Acosta, an Argentine who dazzled and disappointed for four seasons before signing with the Mexican club Atlas this winter.
Flores, nicknamed “Ears” by his distinctive ears, will also help compensate for the loss of superstar Wayne Rooney, who returned to England after 1½ seasons in Washington. Although not as famous or as lethal as Rooney, Flores promises to boost the attack and arouse interest in the team, particularly in the Latin American community.
In the current center of the projected field, Flores would have Arriola on his right and Argentina’s Yamil Asad on his left. On his second tour with United, he signed in October, Asad replaces Lucas Rodríguez, whom United refused to buy after his Argentine Student loan expired.
Rooney, Acosta and Rodriguez combined for 24 of the team’s 43 goals last season, including the playoffs.
The only other notable acquisition so far this winter is Estonian striker Erik Sorga, 20, who has a contract with Loudoun United of the second division but is in D.C. in support of the alleged starter Ola Kamara.
United has also attacked Uruguayan attacker Brian Lozano, of the Mexican club Santos Laguna, but does not appear to be close to a multi-million dollar deal. Several other international players are on the radar, including defenders to strengthen a thin baseline body.
Players will start reporting to training camp this weekend in Washington and, after a week of indoor training, they will regroup in Clearwater, Florida, for six friendly. The season’s opening is on February 29 against the Colorado Rapids at Audi Field.
Flores arrives in Washington after 1½ seasons with Morelia. He published 12 goals and six assists in 47 games. In the quarterfinals of the Apertura tournament in November, he scored three goals in a two-stage victory over Leon. Morelia lost in the semifinals to Club América.
In both Mexico and Peru, Flores is known for his work ethic, endurance, tactical awareness and vision. It is said that his touch on the ball is improving. He made significant progress during the qualifiers for the 2018 World Cup, scoring five times, including a winner of the match against Uruguay.
With the qualification for the 2022 World Cup as of this year and the Copa América returning this summer, Flores will inform the national team periodically and lose MLS time. Defensive midfielder Júnior Moreno (Venezuela) is in the same situation.
Notes: Moreno and midfielder Ulises Segura (Costa Rica) received permanent residence in the United States and will no longer count as international players.
Each team has eight seats. United’s current internationals are Flores, Kamara (Norway) and midfielder Yamil Asad (Argentina). Sorga would also occupy one if, as expected, his contract is updated to MLS from the USL Second Division Championship. …
In the second part of the MLS draft, United claimed Andrew Verdi of Michigan, the Big Ten goalie of the year, in the third round. The team transmitted its other three selections.
United renewed its jersey sponsorship with Leidos, a contractor of the Northern Virginia government. The deal is for two years. Leidos replaced Volkswagen in 2014.