The first player signed by Orlando City after the hiring of head coach Jason Kreis has actually been with the team for a while.
Uruguayan centerback José Aja, 23, has been signed to a six-month loan with an option to buy his rights from Montevideo powerhouse Nacional, which had already loaned him this year to local rival Racing Club. For Racing he played 12 Primera Division games and scored two goals. He will be added to the Lions roster once his work visa is processed and Orlando City receives his international transfer certificate.
Terms were not disclosed for the acquisition of Aja (6-foot-4, 185 pounds). He started his pro career with Nacional two years ago. He has played 22 league matches and also represented Nacional in the Copa Libertadores and Copa Sudamericana. He has been training with Orlando City for the past several weeks.
“We are excited to have José join the team,” said Orlando City assistant GM Niki Budadic. “He is a young, talented defender that we have been looking at for a while because we knew he could come in and make an impact on our team. We look forward to working with him and benefiting from his contributions.”
Kreis was introduced as the Lions' new head coach Wednesday and officially takes over Monday. Interim replacement Bobby Murphy and his staff will handle the coaching duties Saturday in a league match against Columbus.