Philadelphia Union today announced that central defender Carlos Valdes has returned to the club after nearly a 19 month absence which included loan spells at Independiente Santa Fe in Colombia and San Lorenzo in Argentina as well as a trip to the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Valdes has signed a multi-year deal with the Union and will be available for selection on Saturday when the club hosts the Montreal Impact at 7:00 p.m. at PPL Park.
Valdes, 29, returns to Philadelphia after helping Colombia to a historic run in the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. He started and played a full 90 minutes in a 4-1 win over Japan in group play, allowing the “los Cafeteros” to coast through Group C with an undefeated 3-0 record and advance to the quarterfinals for the first time in history. Columbia defeated Uruguay 2-0 in the round of 16, before falling to Brazil 2-1 in the quarterfinals.
Valdes was originally loaned by the Union on January 15, 2013 to Independiente Santa Fe to assist in his quest for a spot on the final 23-man Colombian World Cup roster. He made 32 appearances for Independiente during the 2013 season, scoring four goals. Valdes started in five of Colombia’s qualifying matches on the road to Brazil 2014.
In January of 2014, he was loaned to San Lorenzo in Argentina, where he made seven appearances during the 2013-14 season prior to leaving for the World Cup.
Valdes originally joined Philadelphia Union on loan from Santa Fe on January 20, 2011. Seven months later on August 5, 2011, the Union secured the full rights to Valdes who was instrumental in leading the club to its first postseason appearance. Valdes has appeared in 65 career matches and scored three goals. He helped anchor a defense that finished the 2011 regular season tied for second in goals against average (1.06) with 10 shutouts. They also limited opponents to just 3.05 shots on goal during the regular season, which is an all-time Major League Soccer record. In 2012, Valdes represented the Union in the AT&T MLS All-Star Game.
Player: Carlos Valdes
Weight: 176 lbs
Date of Birth: May 22, 1985
Birthplace: Cali, Colombia