Mexican Forward Daniel Rios Returns to MLS, Joins Atlanta United on Loan

Daniel Rios with Nashville SC in July 2021
Daniel Rios with Nashville SC in July 2021. Photo by Kevin Langley/CSM/Shutterstock (12220313bc)

Atlanta United announced on Wednesday that they have acquired Mexican forward Daniel Rios on loan from Liga MX’s CD Guadalajara (Chivas). According to the MLS side, Rios joins the club until the end of the 2024 campaign and will occupy a supplemental roster spot.

Rios is well familiar with MLS, having played in the league between 2020 and 2022 with Nashville SC and Charlotte FC. He has scored 12 goals in 57 matches during that period.

According to Atlanta’s vice president and technical director Carlos Bocanegra, the team wanted to strengthen their attacking depth and felt that Rios was a perfect choice due to his previous experience in MLS.

“We have been looking to strengthen our depth in the attack and find a proven goal scorer who knows MLS,” said Bocanegra in a statement. “Daniel is a player we are familiar with from his previous stops in the league. Looking ahead to a busy summer with MLS, U.S. Open Cup, and Leagues Cup, along with the potential to lose several players to both Euros and Copa America, we believe Daniel brings quality to our team and adds competition to the group.”

Rios made his professional debut with Chivas in 2015 but spent most of his early career on loans. In 2018, he was loaned out to USL side North Carolina FC, where he scored 20 goals in 32 games. This prompted Nashville to make him their first MLS signing. He would go on to spend another season in the USL, scoring 21 goals and becoming the first player in league history to score 20 goals in back-to-back seasons.

Rios left MLS at the end of the 2022 season to rejoin Chivas. However, he struggled to find playing time with his boyhood club, making only 19 appearances.

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