LOS ANGELES (Wednesday, March 1, 2023) – The LA Galaxy today announced the club has named midfielder Riqui Puig as a Designated Player.
Puig, 23, tallied three goals and five assists in 10 regular-season appearances (9 starts) in his first season with the LA Galaxy during the 2022 campaign. In his first nine regular-season starts spanning Aug. 28-Oct. 9, 2022 with LA, Puig led MLS in assists (5), passes attempted (678), passes completed (623), successful passes ending in the final third (213), ranked tied for first amongst all field players in minutes played (799 minutes) and led the Galaxy with eight goal contributions (3 goals, 5 assists). Additionally, Puig ranked fourth in the league in duels won (55) and ranked tied for 12th in possessions won (54), while the Galaxy posted a 4-1-5 record with Puig in the starting lineup during that span.
In his first start for the club, Puig recorded an assist in a 2-1 road win over the New England Revolution on Aug. 28, 2022. Three days later, Puig tallied the game-tying goal in stoppage-time in a 2-2 draw at Toronto FC on Aug. 31, 2022. Notably, Puig registered three assists, the second most in a single match in team history, in the Galaxy’s 4-1 win over the Colorado Rapids on Sept. 17, 2022.
The LA Galaxy acquired Puig from FC Barcelona on Aug. 4, 2022, and signed the midfielder to a three-and-a-half-year contract through the end of the 2025 MLS season. The Matadepera, Spain, native tallied two goals and three assists in 57 appearances (15 starts) across all competitions with FC Barcelona (2018-22).
The club’s Designated Players for 2023 are forward Javier “Chicharito” Hernández and midfielder Douglas Costa and Riqui Puig. LA’s U22 Initiative Players include forward Dejan Joveljić, midfielder Efraín Álvarez and defender Lucas Calegari. Calegari will be added to the club’s roster pending receipt of his P-1 Visa and International Transfer Certificate (ITC).
LA has eight players occupying international roster slots: defenders Martín Cáceres, Lucas Calegari and Chris Mavinga, midfielders Gastón Brugman, Douglas Costa and Riqui Puig and forwards Javier Hernández and Dejan Joveljić.
LA GALAXY 2023 ROSTER (as of March 1, 2023)
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Bond, Jonathan Klinsmann
DEFENDERS (10): Martín Cáceres, Lucas Calegari, Séga Coulibaly, Raheem Edwards, Marcus Ferkranus, Chase Gasper, Kelvin Leerdam, Chris Mavinga, Jalen Neal, Eriq Zavaleta
MIDFIELDERS (11): Daniel Aguirre, Efraín Álvarez, Tyler Boyd, Gastón Brugman, Douglas Costa, Mark Delgado, Jonathan Pérez, Riqui Puig, Jose “Memo” Rodríguez, Uri Rosell, Adam Saldaña
FORWARDS (3): Javier Hernández, Dejan Joveljić, Preston Judd