February 21, 2013 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Real Salt Lake
SANDY, Utah (Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013) - Real Salt Lake signed FW Olmes Garcia to a five-year contract on Thursday. RSL signed Garcia after paying a transfer fee to his former club, Colombian First Division side Deportes Quindio.
Garcia, 20, turned pro in early 2011. He comes to Real Salt Lake after spending the last two years at Deportes Quindio. The Barranquilla, Colombia native made 47 appearances for Quindio, scoring seven goals in 36 starts. Garcia improved greatly from 2011 to 2012, notching 33 of his 47 appearances, scoring five of his seven goals and making 26 of his 36 starts last year.
"Garcia is a talented player who is a significant part of our long-term plan," Real Salt Lake General Manager Garth Lagerwey said. "He's fast, has good size and is skilled, but he'll need some time to get used to our system and to Utah. We'll be patient with him as we help him adjust to a new country, a new team, a new language, a new culture and new tactics."
A tall, rangy forward, Garcia began training with Real Salt Lake on Saturday, Feb. 16. He made his RSL preseason debut in the Claret-and-Cobalt's FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup win over New England on Wednesday night, playing 25 minutes off the bench in the Utah side's 3-2 victory.
Garcia will be available for selection in the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup Final between RSL and Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday. The DDC Final will kickoff at 6 p.m. MT at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium and will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network.
RSL will return to Utah on Sunday. The Claret-and-Cobalt will begin preparations for its March 3 season opener at defending Supporters' Shield winners San Jose Earthquakes next week.