Atlanta United rarely miss an opportunity to strengthen. Big hitters in the East, they continue to raise the bar with the signing of Jurgen Damm, 27-year-old, twelve-times-capped Mexican.
Damm, his father is German, was in the Pachuca side that lost to Montreal Impact in the quarter-finals of the CONCACAF Champions League in 2015, playing in both matches.
Although he has appeared more from the bench than as a starter for current club Tigres over the past four seasons, Damm’s pace will add another dimension to the Five Stripes’ armoury.
In his Pachuca days (in a study backed by FIFA) Damm’s blistering pace had him recognized as the second fastest player in the world. Then he was clocked at 35.23 km/h running with the ball. Gareth Bale was #1. Jorge Corrales, Jukka Raitala or whomever faces Atlanta at left-back this season may need to have jets fitted to their heels...
The mainly right-winger for whom Atlanta acquired his discovery rights from Houston Dynamo in exchange for $50,000 in General Allocation Money, will occupy an international roster spot when he joins in August following the Florida tournament.
“It’s exciting to add a player with Jurgen’s pedigree and winning mentality and we’re looking forward to welcoming him to the club,” Atlanta Vice-President and technical director Carlos Bocanegra said in a statement.
“He’s excelled in Liga MX, as well on the international level with the Mexican national team and we believe he can make an immediate impact in MLS. Jurgen is versatile to play on either wing, and with his pace and ability to beat defenders one on one, to deliver a cross, he gives us another valuable weapon in our attack.”
Damm had already been rumoured as a target for Atlanta and it will be interesting to see how he dovetails with Ezequiel Barco and Pity Martinez in the front-line while the prolific Josef Martinez recovers from injury.
Atlanta’s new man has won a slew of club honours in his career including seven Mexican titles (3 x Aperturas & 1 x Clasura & 3 x Campeon des Campeones). He’s also been runner-up with Tigres in South America’s Libertadores Cup, only the third Mexican club to achieve this, and bridesmaid three times in the CONCACAF Champions League final.
Damm just failed to make the final 23 for Mexico’s World Cup squad for Russia in 2018, arguably the finest-ever to represent El-Tri at an international tournament. He was in the provisional squad of 28, but failed to make the final cut.