This time last week, Luis Perea didn’t know where his soccer career was heading. The Peruvian team he had signed for folded, and the young Colombian striker’s future was thrown in doubt.
Then while visiting family in Miami, Perea’s father received a phone call from longtime friend Fernando Clavijo. Now FC Dallas' technical director, Clavijo reported that FCD needed to add depth to the forward position. So without hesitation, Perea packed his bags and landed in Texas over the weekend.
“It happened pretty fast,” Perea said on Wednesday.
What also happened pretty fast was Perea making a difference with his new club. On Tuesday night, 24 hours after signing with FCD, the 25-year-old netted a goal and dished out an assist as FC Dallas defeated Real Salt Lake 3-1 in Reserve League action.
“It was pretty exciting for me,” Perea said. “It felt pretty good. Obviously, I’m not 100 percent, but the team energy gave me strength to score the goal and to win the game. It was really special. It’s not that common when you play your first game to score a goal. I had a chance to score it, and I’m pretty happy about it.”
In 2010, Perea appeared in 36 games for León de Huánuco, scoring 22 goals for the Peruvian side. His will to win and goal scoring ability led to a loan with Chilean football club Everton de Viña del Mar, where he notched six goals in 13 games.
With FC Dallas, Perea expects to do more of the same: help his team win by burying the ball in the back of the net.
“Personally, I can contribute hard work,” Perea said. “I’m a team player. I try to do everything for my team. Second of all, I score goals. That’s what I’m here for. I’m going to try my best every game and every practice to score goals and help my team win.
“I’m looking forward to playing in this league. I watched it on TV in South America. For me to be here, is a dream come true. Being here with my teammates every day is pretty exciting for me.”