Washington Spirit Lands Colombian National Team Star, World Cup Standout Leicy Santos

Washington Spirit  |   April 2, 2024
Washington Spirit Lands Colombian National Team Star, World Cup Standout Leicy Santos Featured Image

Santos inks three-year deal in move to NWSL, will join the Spirit upon the conclusion of the current Liga F season


Washington, D.C. (04/02/2024) – The Washington Spirit has agreed to terms with star Colombian midfielder Leicy Santos on a three-year contract, the club announced today. Santos will join the Spirit in the coming months upon wrapping up the 2023-24 Liga F season in Spain with Atlético Madrid.


Santos’ move to the District is the latest splash made by the Spirit in the global soccer world after hiring Jonatan Giráldez from Spain’s FC Barcelona Femení in January. In keeping with owner Michele Kang’s vision for the Spirit to be the world’s preeminent sports organization, club leadership has shown its commitment to finding and bringing in key personnel that will continue to propel the team forward.


“I’m so excited to be starting a new journey in a new league with the Washington Spirit,” said Santos. “As an institution, the Spirit has been home to some top players. They are pioneers in the women’s game with an incredible owner in Michele Kang, a talented coach with Jonatan, and I’m ready to join them after finishing up my time with Atletico these next few months to see what I can do to add to the legacy. I’m so thankful to my management team TMJ and thankful to Jona and Mark [Krikorian] for having confidence in me.


Santos made waves on the international stage during last summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup with her quarterfinal stunner against back-to-back The Best FIFA Women’s Goalkeeper winner Mary Earps and eventual tournament runner-up England. Her extensive experience at the international level includes 43 appearances for the Colombian senior national team since 2014. She represented Las Cafeteras in each of the federation’s last two Women’s World Cup appearances in 2015 and 2023.



Since joining Atlético Madrid in 2019, Santos has appeared in over 100 league matches for the side, totaling 17 goals and 16 assists. Santos also appeared in the Champions League with Atlético Madrid in each of her first two seasons at the club, helping the team reach the quarterfinals in 2020 and the round of 16 in 2021. She has recorded one goal across seven Champions League appearances. In 2023, Santos and Atlético won Copa de la Reina, completing a thrilling late comeback over crosstown rival Real Madrid in the tournament’s final. Prior to her tenure with Atlético Madrid, Santos played for Independiente Santa Fe in Colombia’s Liga Professional Femenina from 2017 to 2019.


Originally from San Sebastián within the town of Lorica, Colombia, Santos grew up playing soccer on boys’ teams before going to Bogotá to train with Besser Football Club at just 12 years old. Santos’ family eventually moved full-time to Bogotá to allow her to continue training at a high level. She moved to the United States in 2015 to play at the collegiate level for Iowa Central, winning a national championship in her only year at the school before turning pro.


“Leicy is a phenomenal addition for this team,” said Krikorian. “Her technical abilities on the pitch are world-class and she has provided a winning edge to her teams at all levels. Having her join our already impressive roster is going to make the Spirit an even more intimidating opponent in the NWSL.”


This article was edited from its original version on April 3, 2024 at 7:00pm ET. 


About The Washington Spirit

The Washington Spirit is the professional women’s soccer team based in Washington, D.C. and plays at Audi Field in Buzzard Point. The Spirit was founded on November 21, 2012, and are an inaugural member of the National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL), the premier women’s soccer league in North America. For more information about the Spirit, visit WashingtonSpirit.com and follow the club on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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