D.C. United today announced the club has acquired Colombian forward Lionard Pajoy and an international roster spot from the Philadelphia Union in exchange for midfielder Danny Cruz. The Union signed Pajoy from Colombian first division side Itagüí Ditaires in February of 2011. Pajoy will be available for selection at United’s match against Philadelphia this Sunday at RFK Stadium (5 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network – TICKETS).
Born: June 7, 1981
Hometown: Norte de Santander, Colombia
Previous Club: Philadelphia Union
“It was not an easy decision to trade Danny. He’s been a terrific player on and off the field this season,” said D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper. “We felt that we needed to add another piece up top and the opportunity to get Lionard Pajoy was one that we could not pass up. We’re excited to integrate him into our side immediately.”
RELATED: More comments from Ben Olsen on acquiring Pajoy.
Pajoy has been a consistent regular in the Union lineup in his first season in Major League Soccer. He has appeared in 20 games (16 starts) this year while netting five goals and assisting on two others. Pajoy is tied as the Union’s leading goal scorer on the year and has logged 1,490 total minutes on the field.
Pajoy has scored 47 goals in 215 appearances since beginning his professional career with Colombian side Cortulua in 2004. He has featured for a number of other Colombian teams, including Atlético Huila in 2005, Boyacá Chicó in 2006, Deportivo Cúcuta from 2007-2009, Deportivo Cali in 2010, and Millionarios in 2010 before his loan to Itagüí Ditaires.
Cruz departs D.C. United after being acquired from the Houston Dynamo for a partial allocation in January. The 22-year old saw time in 16 League matches (12 starts) this season, notching a goal and three assists. His 969 minutes played were 13th most on the team to date.