LOS ANGELES (AP) — Los Angeles FC has signed veteran Honduran defender Andy Najar.
The club announced Najar’s return to Major League Soccer on Wednesday, The right back should be available for LAFC when the MLS season resumes next month with a tournament near Orlando, Florida.
The 27-year-old Najar has been training with LAFC since February. He has spent the past seven years with Anderlecht in Belgium’s top division, but hasn’t played in a match since May 2019 while recovering from a knee injury.
Najar, who went to high school in Virginia, was named MLS Rookie of the Year with D.C. United in 2010. He moved to Anderlecht in early 2013, becoming the first homegrown player in MLS history to join a European club permanently.
Najar had 14 goals and 16 assists in 164 matches for Anderlecht, including seven Champions League games and 20 Europa League contests. He has struggled with injuries in recent years, appearing in only 28 league games since 2016.
He has also appeared in 36 games for Honduras’ national team over the past nine years.
Najar could become LAFC’s starting right back soon if coach Bob Bradley elects to move Tristan Blackmon to the center of his defense to replace Walker Zimmerman, who was traded to Nashville. LAFC went 1-0-1 before the MLS season was suspended by the coronavirus pandemic.
LAFC posted the best regular season in MLS history last year while winning the Supporters’ Shield. The club has since added veteran Dutch goalkeeper Kenneth Vermeer and several young talents including midfielders Jose Cifuentes of Ecuador and Francisco Ginella of Uruguay.
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