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Orlando City acquires Real Salt Lake defender Danilo Acosta on loan

Real Salt Lake midfielder Danilo Acosta (25) screens out Seattle Sounders FC defender Kelvin Leerdam (18) during the first half at CenturyLink Field. (Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports)

Orlando City has acquired Real Salt Lake defender Danilo Acosta on loan with an option to make the transfer permanent at the end of the 2019 season in exchange for $75,000 in General Allocation Money (GAM). 

Pro Soccer USA first reported Thursday that the Lions’ deal with Acosta was pending league approval.

The acquisition is the latest move amid an Orlando City offseason roster overhaul.

“Danilo is a young, talented player who brings national team experience to our roster,” Orlando City SC executive vice president of soccer operations Luiz Muzzi said in a statement. “He has the qualities and character we are looking for in a left back and are excited to bring him on board and start working with him for the preseason.”

Acosta played in 12 matches for Real Salt Lake last season with 10 starts. He tallied two assists in league play last season.

Acosta, 21, was called to the United States men’s national team under-20 training camp in 2016. The 5-foot-11 Homegrown is capable of playing at centerback or outside back, according to Real Salt Lake’s website. Acosta didn’t play much at the end of the 2018 season and was subbed on just once during Real Salt Lake’s final 14 matches of the season.

Orlando City SC is continuing to revamp its roster after a rough 2018 season and is in need of players who can play left back. 

Orlando City traded Brazilian left back Victor “PC” Giro to Vancouver Dec. 9 in exchange for a third-round 2019 SuperDraft pick. Shortly after that, the club traded left back Mohamed El-Munir to LAFC in exchange for João Moutinho, the No. 1 pick in last season’s SuperDraft.

Left back Donny Toia, whose 2019 contract option was declined by Orlando City, was acquired in the MLS Re-Entry draft by Real Salt Lake.

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