Leal photo courtesy Deportiva Saprissa.
Nashville SC’s next international signing is on the way. As first reported by Teletica Deportes in Costa Rica, and confirmed by the sources of ESPN’s Jeffrey Carlisle, the Boys in Gold will be adding 22-year old attacker Randall Leal. He has 13 international caps with Costa Rica, though he has yet to record an international goal or assist for the Ticos.
The 22-year old currently plays for Saprissa, one of the largest clubs in Costa Rica (playing in the national capital of San José). He was in Belgium’s first division (and then second division in 2017-18) with KV Mechelen for three-plus seasons prior to that. That club, uh, was found guilty of significant match-fixing and ineligible for promotion to the Belgian first division. To me, a solid time to get outta there!
Saprissa played in the 2019 CONCACAF Champions League, losing to Mexico’s Tigres in the Round of 16 during knockout play. Leal came on as a substitute in the second leg of that home-and-home tie, a 5-1 loss to lose 5-2 on aggregate (his team was down 4-1 when he entered the match).
There isn’t a highlight reel with horrible techno music available (despite three years in Belgium!), so here is a recent game highlight – he’s No. 8 and hace un golazo at 1:31:
Per Transfermarkt (and including the typical “it is not gospel or often even accurate” caveats), his transfer value is about $300,000. Per the reports from Costa Rica, his deal is for four years. One must assume it’s effective Jan. 1, as with NSC’s other signings since the close of the MLS transfer window.
It’s tough to give a full evaluation without… uh, even a full highlight reel, but certainly the goal of note in the video shows both a desire and an ability to beat players on the dribble, and of course the capability of striking from distance.
More to come when more details are available… Costa Rica is not the most-accessible league for researching players (particularly trying to do so in English).