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Former Spartak Moscow winger Maidana delighted to join MLS movement

Cristian Maidana admits a few years ago he would never have thought he would be saddling up for a Major League Soccer club.

The 27-year old Argentine winger was signed by the Philadelphia Union as a Designated Player last month ahead of the 2014 MLS season.

During his career, Maidana has spent time in his homeland with Banfield, in Russia with Spartak Moscow, in Spain with Huelva, in Chile with Rangers de Talca and in Mexico with Atlante but never believed he would get to the USA.

"At one point, if you would have asked me if I would be coming to the United States to play, I wouldn't have thought so," Maidana told MLSsoccer.com through a translator. "But then this opportunity came up and here I am. And I'm really happy here."

After getting accustomed to his new teammates during preseason training, Maidana is now of the belief that he can become a vital contributor to the Union cause in 2014 and beyond.

"I think being here can allow me to play to my maximum potential, and I've started to see that more since training here in the preseason," he added.

"At the same time, I want to be a champion. And I think as I continue to develop here and with my experience, it can add a lot to a team that already is doing very well.

"The reality is that any player would like to come and play here. I had read and seen a lot about Argentines who had come here and been successful."

Maidana will get to show the North American soccer public what he is capable of when Philly kick of their 2014 MLS campaign with a trip to Portland Timbers on Saturday, March 8.

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Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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