Official: Favio Alvarez joins Galaxy on loan

CARSON, Calif. — The LA Galaxy have completed the acquisition of 26-year-old Favio Alvarez on loan from Atlético Tucumán in Argentina’s Primera División, the club announced today just hours ahead of the close of the league’s Primary Transfer window.

The Argentine was acquired on a season-long loan and will await the issuance of his P-1 Visa and his International Transfer Certificate before being officially added to the roster. Targeted Allocation Money was used to secure his spot on the roster meaning his salary falls between $530,000 and $1.5 million — the range at which TAM can be used on a player.

Alvarez is a versatile playmaker that can play as either a forward or in the midfield, and that versatility is precisely why he was targeted by general manager Dennis te Kloese and Guillermo Barros Schelotto. He can play the no. 10 role, out wide as a winger, or up top as a forward.

With the long-term injury to Romain Alessandrini, the club focused on a player that could provide cover in the midfield and also be a backup to 37-year-old Zlatan Ibrahimovic at the forward position.

And with Alvarez, they believe they’ve found it.

“Favio is a talented and dynamic attacking player who will be a valuable addition to our roster,” said te Kloese. “He has a versatile skill set that will allow him to play multiple positions in our attack. We think he can be a dangerous option for our club this season and we look forward to adding him to the team.”

Alvarez made his professional debut at the age of 18 with Talleres de Córdoba in 2011 and has played at multiple clubs since while racking up nearly 120 games — split between the Primera B Nacional (2nd Division) and the Primera Division (top flight Argentine football).

He was also a player that Schelotto had looked at previously when in 2017 he was targeted for the Boca Juniors roster. Having missed out on landing him there, Schelotto has now tracked him down for the Galaxy.

Well known for his technical footwork, and his many hairstyles, Alvarez has sometimes been compared to Brazilian Neymar. But what he could bring to the Galaxy’s roster is even more important than what color his hair currently is.

Alvarez will find himself playing the no. 10 position for the Galaxy. In that playmaker role, he’ll be able to open up passing lanes while combining with Jonathan dos Santos and Joe Corona. And he’ll likely displace Sebastian Lletget to one of the midfield wings.

“He’s the kind of player I know I like,” Schelotto said on the club’s website. “I know him from Argentina. He can help us a lot.”

But his addition to the Galaxy opens up more flexibility in their starting lineups and also pushes a starter to the bench give the club more depth through the attacking ranks. Those attacking subs are sorely needed as the Galaxy face six games in May and opened the month with a 3-2 loss in New York that showed many tired legs.

Alvarez could be available for the Galaxy’s next home game where they will host New York City FC at Dignity Health Sports Park on Saturday, May 11 (1 p.m. PT; ESPN).