The Chicago Fire Soccer Club announced today the signing of forward Cristian Nazarit on a free transfer. The 20-year-old striker comes to the club from Colombian Primera A side Independiente Santa Fe and will be available for selection by Fire Head Coach Carlos de los Cobos for the Chicago Fire – Vancouver Whitecaps match at TOYOTA PARK this Saturday, May 7 at 7:30 p.m. CT (CSN). Per league and team policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“Cristian brings a wealth of talent and experience to the Chicago Fire,” said Fire Technical Director Frank Klopas. “The Colombian target forward has pace, strikes the ball well and is able to play with his back to goal. His size and offensive abilities make him a positive addition to our team.” Nazarit began his professional career with Colombian side America de Cali in 2007, where he appeared in 13 matches before transferring to Independiente at the beginning of 2008. While with Los Cardenales, Nazarit appeared in 42 matches, scoring 16 goals in the process.
Nazarit has played a large role in the Colombian youth national team setup, helping Colombia qualify for the 2007 FIFA U-17 World Cup in South Korea. The Cali, Colombia product led his nation with six goals in the CONMEBOL qualifying tournament held in Ecuador before scoring three more at the World Championships later that year, helping the young side to the Round of 16 where they eventually fell to tournament champions Nigeria.
Following the tournament, the young striker was invited to train with the Colombian national team, by then head coach Jorge Luis Pinto, but never appeared in a match.
In 2009, Nazarit was again part of the roster as Colombia attempted to qualify for the 2009 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Egypt. Joined by fellow Fire defender Yamith Cuesta, Nazarit scored one goal in the tournament, but Colombia missed out on qualifying for the tournament by one point.
In addition, Croatian midfielder Marko Maric has been placed on the disabled list. Maric suffered a left deltoid sprain in the second half of the Chicago Fire – Portland Timbers match on April 14.
Name: Cristian Nazarit
Weight: 170 lbs.
Date of Birth: August 13, 1990
Place of Birth: Cali, Colombia
Hometown: Cali, Colombia
Last Club: Independiente Santa Fe (COL)
Acquired: Signed on May 4, 2011