FC Dallas Extends its Geographic Reach in Signing Bulgarian Defender Anton Nedyalkov

FRISCO - FC Dallas is reaching into new corners of the world as they build for 2018.

On Thursday, the club announced the signing of Anton Nedyalkov, a left back from Bulgaria, on transfer from CSKA Sofia in his nation’s top league. Nedyalkov will be the first player in FCD history from Bulgaria and only the fifth Bulgarian player all-time in MLS.

“He is young. We want to go back to what we long, with some of the younger players,” Technical Director Fernando Clavijo said. “[But at the same time] he has played in the international level, played with the Bulgaria national team, has played very good competitions in Europe, and I think he will be an asset for FC Dallas in 2018.”

“This is a whole new world for me and I am very exited,” Nedyalkov told FCDallas.com from his native Bulgaria. “I didn’t know a lot about Dallas, only the things that I read in internet, but I know that we have and incredible training ground and fans. Last year’s Dallas team won a lot of tournaments, so I hope with me [in the fold] we can start winning again.”

A natural left back, the versatile defender has also seen time on occasion at center back, something Oscar Pareja values in players leaving his options open. He’s equally strong with his non-dominant left foot as he is his right and, at 6-foot-2, can contribute on set pieces on both sides of the field.

“He can play and change the form of attack very easily with his left foot or his right foot, but at the same time, he can go forward and also manage well on set pieces,” Clavijo said. “He is more of a defender, not necessarily one of those full back wingers that go up and down the field all the time. He can defend well and it is something that we didn’t manage well at the end of the season and was something that we needed to address.”

“I really like to play with the ball and to help to my teammates. I try to be most effective with a simple style of playing,” Nedyalkov said. “My biggest strength on the field is that I play with my mind.”

At just 24 years old, he is cracking his way into the Bulgarian National Team picture, earning five caps with the senior team over the last 14 months, most recently in 2018 World Cup Qualifying against Luxembourg, the Netherlands and Sweden. He’s hoping playing time in MLS can continue to develop him to the full-time starter for his country.

“I hope so,” he said about the opportunity to grow on the international stage. “I will give everything that I can to make a good progress both personally and to help Dallas to win everything that is possible. I will give 110 percent and also I hope that I will continue my progress in the national team.”

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