Rapids Sign Spanish Defender Aitor Karanka

DENVER (Sunday April 2 2006)- The Colorado Rapids announced today the signing of Spanish defender Aitor Karanka to a multi-year deal. Details of the contract were not made public.

Karanka who began his professional career in 1992 playing for Athletic Bilbao's B-team made his debut with the first team of the Basque Country in 1993. He spent a total of seven seasons with Athletic before being sold to Spanish powerhouse Real Madrid in 1997.

During his five year stint with Madrid Karanka played in all European competitions winning 3 European Champions League Trophies (1997-1998 1999-2000 and 2001-2002) 1 Intercontinental Cup (1998) 1 League Cup (2000-2001) and 2 Spanish Super Cups (1997-1998 2000-2001).

After his five-year tenure with Real Madrid Karanka returned to Bilbao to play for Athletic Club where he was a fixture in the starting lineup from 2002 to 2005.

The native of the city of Vitoria (in Alava Spain) has represented Spain in various international tournaments most of them with the Under-21 National Team. While only playing once with the full national team Karanka was also part of the Spanish contingent that participated in the 1996 Olympic Games held in Atlanta GA.

Karanka’s debut with the Rapids is pending on his work permit authorization by the United States Government.

Aitor Karanka –Defender-
DOB: August 18 1973 in Vitoria Spain
Height: 6-1
Weight: 180
Previous Clubs: Athletic Bilbao Spain (1992-97 and 2003-05) Real Madrid Spain (1997-2002)

Soccer- MLS
Colorado Rapids- Sign Spanish defender Aitor Karanka.