Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Introducing Badilla

The official introduction by the team may be a few days out, but we thought this was a good time to profile the Revs newest addition. Badilla may very well be their biggest international signing since Abundis in 2006 (and hopefully more successful). Badilla comes here as a relatively young defender, that can help the team in the future, as well as this season.

Gabriel Badilla Segura is a 24 year old defender from Costa Rica. In 2001 Badilla burst onto the Costa Rican football scene. As a 17 year old, he captained the countries U-17 World Cup squad. After winning their group, they then lost in the quarterfinals to eventual third place winners, Burkina Faso. Badilla received much praise after the tournament for his leadership, and quality defending.

That year he also made his debut for Costa Rican powerhouse Deportivo Saprissa. In his time at Saprissa, he helped the team win a number of domestic championships. He began to see regular time in 2004, and has been a staple in the side ever since. Playing in over 120 matches for his club, he has score 12 goals.

In 2005 the club won the CONCACAF Champions Cup, and earned a birth into FIFA's Club World Cup. Badilla helped the club reach the semifinals of the Club World Cup, but lost to Liverpool. They then beat Saudi Arabian club Al-Ittihad in the third place match, while representing the CONCACAF region. Gabriel was later considered one of the best defenders in the tournament, and began to perk interest abroad, though he stayed at his domestic club. The club was also the runner up in the CCC in 2004, and earlier this year.

At the senior international level, Badilla helped his country qualify for the 2006 World Cup in Germany. He started in Costa Rica's final group match against Poland. In all he, has earned 8 caps for his country, and looks to be a key figure in their qualifications for the 2010 World Cup.

Gabriel Badilla comes to the Revolution as a very accomplished club/international defender, despite his relatively young age. He looks to be a player that can help stabilize a thin back-line in New England, and can play a number of roles. He has played as a left back in the 3 back-line, and as a central defender in the 4-back set. While his definitive place along the Revolution defense is unknown to us at this time, his versatility shows that he could easily be a contributing member of this defense almost right away.

Before he joins New England, Badilla will play in Costa Rica's World Cup qualifier tomorrow. He will then join the Revolution sometime in the days following that qualifier. His experience at both the international, and club level will surely provide a good element to a reeling Revolution team, in the heart of a brutal schedule down the stretch.

So as a voice for New England, we would like to welcome our newest player, and wish him luck with his new team. He has the support of a region behind him. We hope that he can help bring the glory with him that he has seen at his former club.

Glory Glory Revolution!

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