Diego Valeri

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Diego Valeri
Personal information
Full name Diego Hernán Valeri
Date of birth (1986-05-01) 1 May 1986 (age 33)
Place of birth Lanús, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Height 1.77 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Attacking Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Portland Timbers
Number 8
Youth career
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003–2013 Lanús 220 (39)
2009–2010Porto (loan) 12 (0)
2010Almería (loan) 9 (0)
2013Portland Timbers (loan) 20 (4)
2013– Portland Timbers 191 (72)
National team
2011 Argentina 3 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 September 2019

Diego Hernán Valeri (born 1 May 1986) is an Argentine footballer who currently plays as an attacking midfielder for MLS club Portland Timbers.[1] Valeri played on the Lanús team that won Argentina's 2007 Apertura and the Porto team that won the 2009–10 Portuguese Cup.

In his first season with Portland in 2013, he won the MLS Newcomer of the Year Award. Valeri had led Portland to victory in both the 2015 Western Conference Final and the 2015 MLS Cup, also winning the MLS Cup Most Valuable Player (MVP) award. Diego was the recipient of the 2017 MLS MVP Award. Valeri scored the opener of the 2015 MLS Cup Final in just 27 seconds, a record in the final of that competition. Diego is partially famous for his unique celebrations.

Club career[edit]

Lanús (2003–2013)[edit]

Valeri started his professional career with his hometown club Lanús in 2003. He made his debut for Lanús under the direction of Miguel Ángel Brindisi on 27 September 2003 in a 1–1 draw with Vélez Sarsfield. In 2007, he was part of the squad that won the 2007 Apertura tournament, Lanús' first ever top-flight league title.

Loan spells and return[edit]

On 16 July 2009, Valeri was loaned to Portuguese champion FC Porto, where he played one season, winning the Portuguese Cup. Porto also won the one-match 2009 Portuguese Super Cup, though Valeri did not play. He then spent six months on loan at Spanish club UD Almería. In 2011, Valeri rejoined Lanús and captained the team in its runner-up campaign in the 2011 Clausura.

Portland Timbers (2013–present)[edit]

In January 2013, Valeri was loaned to the Portland Timbers of Major League Soccer on a contract paying $400,000 annually.[2] Portland exercised its option to acquire Valeri on 6 August 2013. Valeri helped Portland top the table in the Western Conference that year.[3][4]

On 6 August 2014 Valeri was part of the Major League Soccer All-Star Team, which won against German Bundesliga title winner and recent European Champions League winner Bayern Munich.[5] Valeri assisted on the game-winning goal.[6]

In May 2015, Valeri returned to the field as a substitute in a match after recovery from a serious injury suffered at the end of the previous season. On 6 December 2015, Valeri scored in the MLS Cup Final at the 27 second mark after Columbus Crew goalkeeper Steve Clark was outsmarted from his defender's back-pass under pressure from Valeri; it was the fastest goal in MLS Cup history.[7] His decisive performance in Portland's 2-1 victory led to his winning the MLS Cup MVP Award.[8]

On 10 August 2016, the Portland Timbers announced the signing of Valeri to a three-year extension, keeping him in Portland through the 2019 MLS season. [9]

Valeri had a standout season in 2017. In August, he became the eighteenth player in league history to have scored at least 50 goals and 50 assists.[10] He broke MLS records for consecutive matches with a goal (9, topping the previous mark of 7) and most goals scored by a midfielder in the regular season (21).[11][12] He was also the second player ever to score 20+ goals and 10+ assists in the regular season, after Sebastian Giovinco in 2015.[13] He was considered instrumental in helping Portland to a first-place finish in the 2017 Western Conference title race.[14] On 4 December, Valeri was awarded the Landon Donovan MLS MVP Award as the league's most valuable player during the 2017 regular season.[15]

International career[edit]

Valeri played his first game for Argentina on 16 March 2011 in a friendly match against Venezuela, helping Argentina win 4–1. He played two further matches for Argentina that year. It sparked some controversy when Diego was not considered for Argentina, after winning the MLS MVP Award. [16]

Style of play[edit]

A technically gifted and creative player, Valeri is known for his skill and ability to provide assists for teammates, and usually plays as an attacking midfielder. Although he usually serves as a playmaker for his teams, he is also capable of scoring goals himself. Diego Valeri is dangerous outside the box, and has a good header like his few goals he scored in the 2017 season. [17][18]

Personal life[edit]

Valeri holds a U.S. green card which qualifies him as a domestic player for MLS roster purposes.[19]



Portland Timbers



  1. ^ "Argentine playmaker Valeri on board as Timbers' new DP". MLS Soccer. 10 January 2013. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  2. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 May 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2013.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ Nick Firchau & Diego Pinzón. "Source: Timbers offering loan deal for Argentine MF Valeri". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved 4 January 2013.
  4. ^ "Portland Timbers purchase contract of midfielder Diego Valeri, sign to new multiyear contract". Portland Timbers.
  5. ^ "FCB muss sich MLS-Allstars geschlagen geben". FC Bayern München. 7 August 2014. Retrieved 7 August 2014.
  6. ^ Itel, Dan (6 August 2014). "MLS 2, Bayern Munich 1 | AT&T MLS All-Star Game Recap". Major League Soccer. Retrieved 27 January 2015.
  7. ^ "Diego Valeri scores fastest goal in MLS Cup history as Portland Timbers take early lead". MLS Soccer. 6 December 2015. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  8. ^ a b "Diego Valeri named MLS Cup Most Valuable Player". MLS Soccer. 6 December 2015. Retrieved 7 December 2015.
  9. ^ Goldberg, Jamie (10 August 2016). "Portland Timbers sign Diego Valeri to contract extension". OregonLive - The Oregonian. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  10. ^ Panizo, Franco (16 August 2017). "Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri becomes 18th player to join MLS's 50-50 club". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  11. ^ Charles Boehm (24 September 2017). "Diego Valeri adds to his League-record streak of consecutive games with a goal". MLS Soccer. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  12. ^ Hoffman, Matt (25 September 2017). "MLS MVP? Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri sets loftier goals". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  13. ^ Mahoney, Ridge (25 October 2017). "MLS Awards: Valeri makes strongest case for MVP". Soccer America. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  14. ^ Doyle, Matthew (1 December 2017). "Armchair Analyst: Club-by-club, what 2017 meant in MLS". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  15. ^ Charles Boehm (4 December 2017). "Portland Timbers' Diego Valeri wins 2017 Landon Donovan MLS MVP award". MLSsoccer.com. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  16. ^ "Diego Valeri". Mundo Albiceleste. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  17. ^ "Diego Valeri". www.mlssoccer.com. Retrieved 28 July 2018.
  18. ^ Chris Rifer (18 September 2017). "Creator-turned-scorer: Valeri has made himself even more important to Portland". FourFourTwo. Retrieved 28 July 2018.
  19. ^ Kesgard, Kip (25 June 2014). "Portland Timbers sign defender Liam Ridgewell to multi-year designated player contract". OregonLive.com - The Oregonian. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  20. ^ "Goals, screw-ups, stats and more: Everything great from the MLS Cup Final". Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  21. ^ "Portland Timbers become first Cascadia club to reach the MLS Cup: "We want to win the big one"". 29 November 2015. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  22. ^ "mls soccer - Google Search". www.google.com. Retrieved 17 January 2018.
  23. ^ "2017 MLS Best XI revealed: Who was the best in 2017?". MLS Soccer. 30 November 2017.
  24. ^ "Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri wins Supporters' Player of the Year". Retrieved 17 January 2018.

External links[edit]