For the first time since officially signing with the Crew on April 26, Jairo Arrieta will be available for selection as the team travels to Montreal for a Sunday tilt with the Impact. Arrieta was eligible to play after the transfer window opened on June 27, but didn't arrive in Columbus until June 29, one day before the Black & Gold's match against Real Salt Lake.
Arrieta saw his first action with the Crew in Monday's 3-1 Reserve League win at New York. The Costa Rican put Columbus on the board with his 34th minute strike.
"(Arrieta) did well. He took the defender on in the box and finished with his left foot," head coach Robert Warzycha said of the new addition's tally. "It was pretty sweet."
"It was really good for me to score to get the confidence of playing. As a forward, I like to score," Arrieta explained through a translator. "It was good to play with the team, so when a real game comes , I'll be ready."
Arrieta will have three more days of training this week to get more acquainted with his new team and league before Sunday's match north of the border.
The biggest difference between playing in Major League Soccer and the Costa Rican Primera is the physicality, Arrieta says.
"(MLS) is a more physical game than Costa Rica. Costa Rica has more of a technical style," the striker explained. "Here it is more physical, more contact. I'm working and trying to get used to that difference and trying to understand the way other teams play and how we play to be important to the team and help."
"I think he's a smart player," Warzycha complimented Arrieta. "Players recognize good players. He's making good runs. He's not losing the ball. He's adjusting to the speed of play and showing he's a good player."
Arrieta was signed to help boost a Crew attack that has been searching for a proven goalscorer. The striker scored 45 goals over the last five seasons playing with Deportivo Saprissa in Costa Rica.
"We played against him in (CONCACAF) Champions League when we played against Saprissa. He was a handful," Warzycha said. "He knows where to go and how to finish."
If his Reserve League test-run was any indication, Arrieta could continue to be a handful for MLS defenses.