Newly signed as the third designated player for Toronto FC through 2025, Venezuelan international midfielder/forward Yeferson Soteldo has arrived in Florida from Brazilian club Santos FC (Santos).
“I am very excited to come to Toronto FC. It is one of the most important sports organizations in Canada and the United States,” said Soteldo. “It is an MLS Cup champion, has great players, and most importantly, they are always competing to win. They have amazing fans and facilities.”
“MLS has been getting a lot of interest worldwide. It is competitive, with thousands of fans in every game,” said the 23-year-old attacker. “I have followed the league and the impact it is having,” he explained. “MLS has incredible stadiums, quality players, and games with an excellent level.”
Soteldo, 23, made 104 appearances for Santos, scoring 20 goals and adding 17 assists since joining the club in January 2019. He made his first appearance and scored his first goal on his debut when he came off the bench against Sãn Bento on January 24, 2019. Last season, Soteldo was named to the 2020 Conmebol Copa Libertadores Best XI, and made the 2020 Team of the Year in the Campeonato Paulista (São Paulo’s premier state championship). During his time with Santos, Soteldo was given the historic number 10 shirt, worn by Santos’ legendary player Pele.
“We are very excited for Yeferson to join our club. He is a dynamic, exciting, fearless player who will immediately improve our already strong roster,” said Toronto FC President Bill Manning. “He checks the boxes of what we were looking for in a DP, an attacking player who adds a different dimension to our side, and I think our fans will be excited to see him in a TFC uniform.”
Toront FC says, “Soteldo began his career in his native Venezuela, at Zamora Fútbol Club (Zamora). He made his professional debut at the age of 16 when he came off the bench in a 0–0 home draw against Atlético Venezuela. He made 99 appearances, scoring 24 goals and adding 29 assists for Zamora in all competitions (Primera Division, Copa Venezuela, Conmebol Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana). With Zamora, Soteldo won Venezuelan League titles (2014, 2015 and 2016). In December 2016, Soteldo moved to Chile, signing with Club Deportivo Huachipato (Primera Division, Chile), where he appeared in 29 matches and registered six goals and nine assists. In 2018, was loaned to Universidad de Chile, where he made 37 appearances scored seven goals and added nine assists.”
“We are excited for Yeferson to join the team and integrate himself within our environment. He is an exciting player and he will help our team. Very happy and grateful that our board supports this team in a way where we are able to find and acquire a player of his caliber,” said Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis. “Yeferson is a difference maker. We will wrap our arms around he and his family, such that Yeferson can enjoy his football, teammates, and the new environment.”
Soteldo has earned 19 caps for the Venezuela National team during his career. He made his senior national team debut before being called up to the U-20 side in a friendly match against Costa Rica on February 2, 2016. Soteldo represented Venezuela at the youth level and was a part of the historic U-20 team that finished runners-up at the FIFA U-20 World Cup in 2017.
“I will be competing at a high level which I will bring to the Venezuelan National Team,” Soteldo foresaw. “Many Venezuelans are playing in the MLS and the majority also represent the National Team. I will meet again with Erickson Gallardo in TFC and I have always followed with pride and admiration what Josef Martínez has achieved in Atlanta.”
“I am thankful to Toronto FC for the effort they made, along with Secaports Agency, to bring me to the team and make this possible,” added Soteldo. “I promise to do my best to achieve important things. I’m excited.”
SOURCE Toronto FC