ATLANTA (January 4, 2012) — The Atlanta Silverbacks have signed Chilean forward REINALDO NAVIA, pending USSF and ITC approval, the club announced Wednesday.
The 33-year-old striker comes to Atlanta after spending the 2011 season with Ñublense of the Chilean first division. Prior to his stint with Ñublense, Navia played for some of Latin America’s most prestigious clubs including Mexican giants Club América and Monterrey and Ecuadorian powerhouse LDU Quito. Navia featured as a substitute in the World Club Cup Final in 2008 versus Manchester United.
“We’re very excited that Reinaldo will be on our front line,” Silverbacks Director of Soccer Rodrigo Rios said “There is a reason why he has played with some of the biggest clubs in the world – he is a tremendously skilled player.”
A native of Quillota, Chile, Navia made a name for himself in his home country, playing for Santiago Wanderers from 1995-2000. After proving himself in Chile, he moved to Mexico where he experienced a great deal of success. Splitting time between Estudiantes Tecos and Monarcas Morelia in Mexico’s top division, Navia scored 55 goals in 94 games from 2001-2003.
The 5-foot-7 forward’s performance early in his Mexican career earned him a contract with Club América in 2004. During InterLiga play with Club América, Navia helped his team qualify for Copa Libertadores in his first season. He was the top goalscorer in the tournament in 2004, and currently holds the all-time record for most goals scored in the InterLiga with nine. Following his time with Club América, Navia made stops with eight more clubs in Mexico, Argentina, Ecuador, and Chile from 2006-2011.
Navia has represented Chile at the senior national team level 40 times, scoring 10 goals in the process. He shot his country into the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney by scoring the lone goal against Argentina in the finals of South American qualifying tournament; at the Olympics, his team earned the bronze medal.
Navia is expected to join the team when training camp begins in February.