SANDY — Real Salt Lake announced the signing of forward Olmes Garcia to a five-year contract on Thursday. RSL sealed the deal for Garcia after paying a transfer fee to his former club, Colombian First Division side Deportes Quindio.
Garcia, 20, turned pro in early 2011. He comes to Real Salt Lake after spending the last two years at Deportes Quindio. The Barranquilla, Colombia, native made 47 appearances for Quindio, scoring seven goals in 36 starts, and improved greatly from 2011 to 2012, notching 33 of his 47 appearances, scoring five of his seven goals and making 26 of his 36 starts last year.
"Garcia is a talented player who is a significant part of our long-term plan," Real Salt Lake general manager Garth Lagerwey said. "He's fast, has good size and is skilled, but he'll need some time to get used to our system and to Utah. We'll be patient with him as we help him adjust to a new country, a new team, a new language, a new culture and new tactics."
Garcia began training with Real Salt Lake last Saturday and made his RSL preseason debut in the Claret-and-Cobalt's FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup win over New England on Wednesday night, playing 25 minutes off the bench in the Utah side's 3-2 victory.
Garcia will be available for selection in the FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup Final between RSL and Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday. The DDC Final will kickoff at 6 p.m. MT at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium and will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network.
RSL reaches Cup final
Real Salt Lake will play in the nationally televised FC Tucson Desert Diamond Cup Final against the Seattle Sounders FC on Saturday. The match will kick off at 6 p.m. MT at Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium and will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network.
RSL qualified for Saturday's Desert Diamond Cup Final on Wednesday night, when it erased a one-goal deficit in the game's final three minutes to beat the New England Revolution 3-2.