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Giancarlo González
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González with Costa Rica at the 2018 FIFA World Cup
Personal information
Full name Giancarlo González Castro
Date of birth 8 February 1988 (1988-02-08) (age 33)
Place of birth Desamparados, San José, Costa Rica
Height 1.86 m
Playing position Centre-back
Club information
Current club LA Galaxy
Number 21
Youth career
2004–2006 Alajuelense
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2009–2012 Alajuelense 91 (6)
2012–2013 Vålerenga 37 (2)
2014 Columbus Crew 17 (1)
2014–2017 Palermo 84 (4)
2017–2019 Bologna 34 (0)
2019– LA Galaxy 30 (2)
National team
2007–2008 Costa Rica U20 2 (0)
2010– Costa Rica 86 (2)
  • Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 11 November 2020.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 21 July 2021

Giancarlo González Castro (born 8 February 1988) is a Costa Rican professional footballer who plays as a centre-back for Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy and the Costa Rica national team.

Club career

Early career

González spent his youth career with Alajuelense, apart from a stint with Saprissa when he was between 12 and 14 years of age. He began his professional career with Alajuelense in 2007 and was a key player in helping his club win three league titles.

González joined Norwegian club Vålerenga after his contract expired on 31 July 2012. During his time at Vålerenga, González appeared in 37 league matches and scored two goals.

Columbus Crew

On 21 February 2014, González signed with Major League Soccer side Columbus Crew. On 15 April 2014, the MLS Disciplinary Committee fined González an undisclosed amount for "embellishment" of an incident in the 92nd minute of the game against the San Jose Earthquakes on 13 April. González was also nominated for the satirical "Fallon d'Floor" award for this effort.

Palermo

After his performances at the 2014 FIFA World Cup, González received interest from a number of European clubs, and on 26 August 2014 Palermo of Italy's Serie A confirmed they had signed him on a three-year deal. The transfer fee was reported to be $5 million, with 5% of the fee being distributed among González's youth clubs Alajuelense and Saprissa as per the FIFA solidarity contribution rules. He made his debut on 19 October 2014 in a home game against Cesena, playing the full 90 minutes and scoring the winning goal in the first minute of injury time.

Palermo's 2016–17 season ended in relegation from Serie A, with González making 21 appearances.

Bologna

On 22 June 2017, Bologna announced the signing of González.

LA Galaxy

On 11 April 2019, González signed with the LA Galaxy.

International career

González played at the 2007 FIFA U-20 World Cup held in Canada.

Nicknamed Pipo, he made his senior international debut for Costa Rica in a friendly against Slovakia on 5 June 2010. In January 2013, he scored the lone goal in a 1–0 victory over Honduras in the 2013 Copa Centroamericana final.

2014 World Cup

In June 2014, González was named in Costa Rica's squad for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. In the team's team's first two group matches, he and his central defensive colleagues Michael Umaña and Óscar Duarte allowed only one goal as Los Ticos beat Uruguay (3–1) and Italy (1–0) to qualify for the knockout stage. Costa Rica completed the group stage unbeaten, recording a second consecutive shutout in a 0–0 draw with England in Belo Horizonte. González's play at the back was listed by several as key to the team's progression from the group stage. His countless interceptions and tackles led to him being named to the ESPN Best XI of the group stage. During the round of 16, González was the third of five Costa Rican players to successfully convert his kick in a 5–3 penalty shootout defeat of Greece. He was included in the BBC's team of the tournament.

2018 World Cup

In May 2018 he was named in Costa Rica's 23 man squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia.

Personal life

González is of Spanish origin. He is a son of Roberto González and Elsa Castro and has a sister and brother. He has a son, Andrey.

Career statistics

Club

Club Season League Cup Continental Playoffs Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Alajuelense 2008–2009 Costa Rican Primera División ? ? ? ? 2 0 ? ? 2 ?
2009–2010 28 3 ? ? ? ? ? ? 28 3
2010–2011 34 0 ? ? 0 0 0 0 34 0
2011–2012 29 3 ? ? 6 0 0 0 35 3
Total 91 6 0 0 8 0 0 0 99 6
Vålerenga 2012 Tippeligaen 12 0 12 0
2013 25 2 4 0 29 2
Total 37 2 4 0 0 0 0 0 41 2
Columbus Crew 2014 Major League Soccer 17 1 17 1
Palermo 2014–15 Serie A 28 1 28 1
2015–16 35 2 1 0 36 1
2016–17 21 1 0 0 21 1
Total 84 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 85 4
Bologna 2017–18 Serie A 22 0 1 0 23 0
2018–19 12 0 1 0 13 0
Total 34 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 36 0
LA Galaxy 2019 Major League Soccer 20 1 0 0 2 0 2 0 24 1
2020 10 1 0 0 0 0 10 1
Total 30 2 0 0 2 0 2 0 34 2
Career total 293 15 7 0 10 0 2 0 312 15

International

Statistics accurate as of match played 21 July 2021.
Costa Rica
Year Apps Goals
2010 3 0
2011 1 0
2012 9 1
2013 18 1
2014 9 0
2015 10 0
2016 3 0
2017 12 0
2018 11 0
2019 5 0
2020 1 0
2021 4 0
Total 86 2

International goals

Scores and results list Costa Rica's goal tally first.
No. Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 25 May 2012 Estadio Nacional, San José, Costa Rica  Guatemala 3–2 3–2 Friendly
2 27 January 2013  Honduras 1–0 1–0 2013 Copa Centroamericana

Honours

Alajuelense

  • Liga FPD: Apertura 2010, Clausura 2011, Apertura 2011

Costa Rica

  • Copa Centroamericana: 2013
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