Sporting Kansas City announced that the club has signed 22-year-old midfielder Benji Joya ahead of today’s MLS roster freeze deadline. Joya will be added to the Sporting Kansas City roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate.
A native of San Jose, California, Joya signed for Mexican powerhouse Santos Laguna in 2011 at age 18. He quickly progressed through the club’s youth ranks and made his Liga MX debut with the senior team in September 2012.
Santos Laguna loaned Joya to the Chicago Fire in 2014, where he started nine of 12 regular season appearances. The midfielder scored a goal just one minute into his MLS debut on March 9, coming off the bench in a 3-2 loss at Chivas USA. Joya spent most of 2015 and 2016 on loan at Club Necaxa in the Mexican second division.
At the international level, Joya featured extensively for the United States U-20s. He captained the side to a second-place finish at the 2013 CONCACAF U-20 Championship and was a member of the U.S. squad at the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey.
Acquisition: Sporting Kansas City (MLS) acquires midfielder Benji Joya on first-come, first-served basis.
Benji Joya (BEN-jee HOY-uh)
Weight: 145 lbs.
Hometown: San Jose, California
Birthplace: San Jose California
Last Club: Club Necaxa (Mexico)