Looking for stats?

Rapids Sign Ecuadorian National Team Defender Diego Calder

January 3, 2013 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Colorado Rapids News Release

COMMERCE CITY, Colo. (Thursday, January 3, 2013) - The Colorado Rapids announced today that the club has signed defender Diego CalderÃ"n, a member of the Ecuadorian National Team, as an International Player. CalderÃ"n, 26, has spent the majority of his professional career with Liga de Quito in the Ecuadorian first division, winning three league championships as well as the prestigious Copa Libertadores.

CalderÃ"n will be eligible pending receipt of his P-1 work visa and International Transfer Certificate. Per league and team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"Diego is a versatile, talented defender who will come in and compete for a spot in our back line," said Rapids Technical Director Paul Bravo. "He can play in the middle or on the left, and has extensive experience, having won league and continental titles and been a part of his national team throughout World Cup qualifying. We're excited to bring him into the group."

CalderÃ"n joined Liga de Quito in 2003 and made his first team debut in the top division in Ecuador in 2005 at just 18 years old as the club won the 2005 Apertura championship. He spent a season in 2006 on loan Deportivo Azogues, making 11 appearances and helping the team gain promotion to the Ecuador Serie A. After returning to Quito, he became a regular in the lineup, making over 200 appearances with the club and winning the league championship in 2007 and 2010, the 2008 Copa Libertadores, the 2009 Copa Sudamericana, and the 2009 and 2010 Recoba Sudamericana.

With the Ecuadorian National Team, CalderÃ"n has been regularly called up in the last two years, making five appearances in friendlies and being a part of Ecuador's group at the 2011 Copa America. He has been in the gameday squad for each of the team's nine World Cup Qualifying matches so far; Ecuador has a 5-2-2 record and is second place, trailing only Argentina, with seven matches left to play.

The Rapids will start preseason on January 17, and are set to participate in the Desert Friendlies presented by Tucson FC and the Las Vegas ProSoccer Challenge against Chivas USA on February 15 as part of their preparations. To purchase season tickets for the Rapids' 2013 campaign, visit www.ColoradoRapids.com or call 303-825-GOAL.

• Discuss this story on the Major League Soccer message board...

Major League Soccer Stories from January 3, 2013

The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.