Armada FC Signs Honduran Midfielder Junior Sandoval
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - The Jacksonville Armada FC announced on Wednesday the signing of attacking midfielder Junior Sandoval.
A 25-year-old from Quimistán, Honduras, Sandoval arrives in Jacksonville after a stint with Colombian Primera A side Jaguares de Córdoba, where he made 14 appearances, scored one goal and became only the third Honduran ever to play in the Colombian first division.
"Junior is an attack-minded player who is very good technically," said Tony Meola, Armada FC head coach and technical director. "He's scored goals in this league, and when we had the opportunity to bring him in, we just thought it added another dimension to what we could do."
Prior to joining Jaguares, Sandoval made a name for himself with the Atlanta Silverbacks on both the first team and reserves. In the Silverbacks' 2014 campaign, he scored seven goals in 24 appearances, only second on the team that season behind Jaime Chavez.
He signed his first professional contract in 2010 with the Puerto Rico Islanders, who won the CFU (Caribbean Football Union) Club Championship that same season. A year later, he joined the Silverbacks on loan from the Islanders, scoring two goals and notching two assists for the club during its inaugural season in the NASL.
After making 15 appearances for the Silverbacks in 2011, the Islanders recalled Sandoval from his loan. He went on to make four appearances for Puerto Rico, including one against the Silverbacks in NASL play, before the 2011 season came to a close.
"We're at the point where we're late in the game (of building a roster), and guys that we bring in have to be of a mold that we don't already have," Meola said. "Junior can beat you in a couple of different ways. He's good on the dribble and his long-range shooting is outstanding. He gives us a different look."
Following a brief spell with the Silverbacks Reserves in 2012, which included two goals in four games, he signed with Honduran giant CD Marathón, where made 13 appearances including a 2012 CONCACAF Champions League group stage match against Major League Soccer side Seattle Sounders FC at CenturyLink Field.
He played a year of college soccer at Georgia Perimeter College, where he was the school's leading scorer as a freshman with nine goals and 11 assists and was named to the NJCAA All-Region First Team.
The Armada will start preseason training on Jan. 18 and host three MLS clubs - the Philadelphia Union (Feb. 6), Orlando City SC (Feb. 13) and New York Red Bulls (Feb. 27) - for friendlies at Community First Park at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. Tickets are available by calling 1.844.2.ARMADA or visiting armadafc.com/tickets.
About the Jacksonville Armada FC
The Jacksonville Armada FC is Jacksonville's newest professional sports team and a member of the North American Soccer League. The club set NASL preseason and regular season attendance records with matches against MLS side Philadelphia Union and NASL FC Edmonton. The NASL member teams are: Carolina RailHawks, FC Edmonton, Fort Lauderdale Strikers, Indy Eleven, Minnesota United FC, New York Cosmos, Ottawa Fury FC, San Antonio Scorpions FC and Tampa Bay Rowdies. Miami FC, Puerto Rico FC and Rayo OKC will begin play in 2016. For more information about the Armada FC, visit ArmadaFC.com. Follow the Armada FC on Twitter @JaxArmadaFC and Facebook at Facebook.com/JaxArmadaFC.
For more information about the NASL, visit NASL.com. Follow the NASL on Twitter @NASLOfficial and Facebook at Facebook.com/NASLfans. Fans can watch every game live at ESPN3.com.
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North American Soccer League Stories from January 13, 2016
- Cosmos Technical Staff Receive Contract Extensions - New York Cosmos
- Armada FC Signs Honduran Midfielder Junior Sandoval - Jacksonville Armada FC
- Fury FC Add Canadian International Kyle Porter - Ottawa Fury FC
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