Portland Timbers add Costa Rican defender Julio Cascante

The Portland Timbers acquired center-back Julio Cascante from Costa Rican giants Saprissa on Tuesday.

The Timbers used targeted allocation money for the transfer, which is pending approval of his visa and other documentation.

Cascante, who is from Puerto Limon, Costa Rica, has played in 107 matches with 93 starts since his professional debut in his native country in 2011.

He made one appearance for the national team in a friendly in December 2015.

"We have monitored his progress for over a year, and have targeted him to help strengthen our backline," Timbers general manager Gavin Wilkinson said in a statement.

"Julio brings an intense focus and awareness to the game and possesses a number of characteristics we believe will help propel him to the next level in his career."

Cascante's career started with Orion FC before three seasons with CF Universidad de Costa Rica. He joined Saprissa in advance of the 2016 season, making 51 league appearances, and played alongside current Timbers David Guzman and Roy Miller.

He also started in three CONCACAF Champions League matches, including a pair against the Timbers.