Paul Arriola

Paul Joseph Arriola (born February 5, 1995) is an American soccer player who plays as a midfielder for Major League Soccer club D.C. United and the United States national team.

Paul Arriola
Arriola with the United States at the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup
Personal information
Full name Paul Joseph Arriola[1]
Date of birth (1995-02-05) February 5, 1995
Place of birth Chula Vista, California, U.S.
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)[2]
Playing position Winger
Club information
Current team
D.C. United
Number 7
Youth career
2010–2011 IMG Soccer Academy
2011–2012 Arsenal FC (California)
2012–2013 LA Galaxy
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2013–2017 Tijuana 83 (4)
2017– D.C. United 68 (14)
National team
2010–2011 United States U17 6 (0)
2012 United States U18 5 (1)
2014–2015 United States U20 17 (2)
2016 United States U23 1 (0)
2016– United States 32 (5)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of October 8, 2019
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of November 19, 2019

Early life

Arriola was born in Chula Vista, California, a suburb of San Diego. He is an American of Mexican descent as his great grandparents immigrated to the United States from Mexico. His parents are Dawn and Art Arriola.[3] Arriola attended Mater Dei Catholic High School in Chula Vista, CA. and iHigh Virtual Academy in San Diego.

Club career


Arriola spent years with U.S. Soccer Development Academy club Arsenal FC based in Temecula, California, a club that has produced several successful players including Carlos Bocanegra and Hector Jiménez, before joining the academy of the Los Angeles Galaxy in 2013.[4]


In December 2012, Arriola was invited to train with Tijuana, after having previously trialed with the club.[5] Following the 2012 season and despite being offered a professional contract by the Galaxy, Arriola opted to sign for Club Tijuana of Liga MX, the highest level of soccer in Mexico. Arriola was part of a string of American-born players to join the Xolos including Edgar Castillo, Herculez Gomez, Joe Corona, and Greg Garza. The Galaxy listed Tijuana's proximity to Arriola's hometown of San Diego, 18 miles, as one factor contributing to his decision to opt for Tijuana over the Galaxy.[6] About his decision, Arriola himself stated, ""I felt that Xolos was the place for me. I love the club, it's my home team and the people down there are wonderful." The decision allowed Arriola to live on the United States side of the border with his family but cross it for training and matches.[3]

Arriola made his debut for the club in a preseason friendly against Club América at Petco Park in San Diego on July 6, 2013. In the 54th minute, Arriola scored to make the score 5–0 in an eventual 5–2 victory for Tijuana.[7] On July 19, 2013 Arriola made his professional league debut in a 3–3 draw with Club Atlas to open the 2013–14 Liga MX season. Arriola was a second-half substitute and assisted on Darío Benedetto's goal only four minutes after entering the match.[8] Just a few days later, Arriola scored his second professional goal in CONCACAF Champions League against C.D. Victoria.

D.C. United

On August 9, 2017, Arriola signed for Major League Soccer side D.C. United for a club record fee of $3,000,000 plus allocation money for his rights to LA Galaxy.[9] He scored his first goal for DC United in their season finale, and last game in RFK Stadium on October 22, 2017, against the New York Red Bulls. The game ended in a 2-1 loss[10]. He ended his 2017 season with DC United with 11 appearances, two assists and only one goal.[11] In the 2018 D.C. United season, Arriola's performances greatly improved. On July 14, 2018, in a 3-1 win against Vancouver Whitecaps, Arriola scored a personal record two goals for United in their inaugural match at Audi Field. He ended the 2018 season with 28 appearances, 7 goals, and 8 assists.[11]

Since joining D.C. United, Arriola has been a key player. His smooth playing and effort helped D.C. United perform. Under Ben Olsen's management, Paul became diverse on the right and started playing both right midfielder and right back. As of September 2, 2019, Arriola has 14 goals and 12 assists for DC United.

International career

Arriola has been part of the United States youth national team set ups and was part of the squad for the 2011 CONCACAF U-17 Championship but did not appear in any matches because of an injury. The United States went on to win the tournament. He made three starts in four matches at the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico.[12] In 2013, Arriola joined the United States U18 squad for a trip to Europe for friendlies against France and Uruquay.[13] Despite playing for the youth teams of the United States, Arriola applied for Mexican citizenship which would allow him to play as a domestic player in Liga MX rather than occupying one of the five foreign player spots.[3]

Arriola made the United States U20 squad at the 2014 Dallas Cup and 2014 NTC Invitational.[14][15] Arriola made the United States U20 squad for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup, appearing in four of the team's five matches and scoring a goal in a 4–0 rout of hosts New Zealand in the group stage.[16]

Arriola made the United States U23 squad for the Olympic qualifiers versus Colombia's U23 team. After not playing the first match on March 25, he started and played 45 minutes in the second leg at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas.[17] The United States U23 lost the series 3–2 on aggregate.

Arriola made his senior team debut on May 22, 2016 against Puerto Rico, scoring his first international goal and notching an assist for a Bobby Wood goal.

Arriola scored his fourth international goal in the opening game of the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup against Guyana at Allianz Field in Saint Paul, Minnesota. The goal was assisted by fellow teammate Weston McKennie, his first international assist, and was the team's first goal of the tournament and the first goal scored in a competitive match under the recently-appointed coach Gregg Berhalter. In the same match, Arriola had a shot which deflected off a defender before ricocheting off of teammate Gyasi Zardes' face and into the goal and recorded an assist for Tyler Boyd's second goal.

Personal life

Paul is in a relationship with Akela Banuelos. They both run a YouTube channel together called Kickin' It with Akela and Paul. He and his girlfriend own two pugs.

Career statistics


As of June 2, 2019[18]
Club Season League League Cup Domestic Cup CONCACAF Total
Tijuana 2013–14 201000052253
2014–15 500080130
2015–16 26100112373
2016–17 2823000312
2017–18 10001121
Total 80430203521089
D.C. United 2017 1110000111
2018 2870010297
2019 1530000153
Total 54110010005511
Career total 13413302145216320


As of November 19, 2019
United States

International goals

As of matches played June 30, 2019. United States score listed first, score column indicates score after each Arriola goal.[19]
International goals by date, venue, cap, opponent, score, result and competition
No. Date Venue Cap Opponent Score Result Competition
1 May 22, 2016Juan Ramón Loubriel Stadium, Bayamón, Puerto Rico1 Puerto Rico3–13–1Friendly
2 September 6, 2016EverBank Field, Jacksonville, United States2 Trinidad and Tobago4–04–02018 FIFA World Cup qualification
3 February 2, 2019Avaya Stadium, San Jose, United States18 Costa Rica2–02–0Friendly
4 June 18, 2019Allianz Field, St. Paul, United States25 Guyana1–04–02019 CONCACAF Gold Cup
5 June 22, 2019FirstEnergy Stadium, Cleveland, United States26 Trinidad and Tobago5–06–0



United States[19]


  1. "40-Player National Team Roster: 2019 Concacaf Gold Cup: United States" (PDF). CONCACAF. p. 16. Retrieved May 21, 2019 via Bernews.
  2. "FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015 List of Players" (PDF). FIFA. May 30, 2015. p. 23. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  3. Marshall, Tom. "American Exports: Paul Arriola explains difficult decision to choose Club Tijuana over LA Galaxy". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  4. Serrano, Adam. "Youth star Arriola makes Galaxy Development Academy debut". Los Angeles Galaxy. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  5. Marshall, Tom. "Galaxy Academy forward Arriola training at Club Tijuana". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  6. Firchau, Nick. "Paul Arriola leaving for Tijuana disappointing, but no real surprise for LA Galaxy". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  7. Marshall, Tom. "American Exports: Paul Arriola nets for Club Tijuana in San Diego Clasico vs. Club America". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  8. Marshall, Tom. "American Exports: Ex-LA Galaxy academy player Paul Arriola registers assist in Club Tijuana debut". Major League Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  9. Goff, Steven (August 9, 2017). "D.C. United signs Paul Arriola in most expensive deal in club history".
  10. "DC United 1, New York Red Bulls 2 | 2017 MLS Match Recap".
  11. "Paul Arriola".
  12. "Paul Arriola Profile". US Soccer. Archived from the original on August 7, 2013. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  13. Clark, Travis. "Despite results, U18 MNT happy with progress". Top Drawer Soccer. Retrieved July 20, 2013.
  14. "U-20 MNT Into Dallas Cup Semifinals". USSF. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
  15. "Ramos Names U-20 MNT Roster for NTC Invitational". USSF. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
  16. "FIFA U-20 World Cup New Zealand 2015 - Statistics - Players - Top goals -".
  17. "United States U23 v Colombia U23". Retrieved April 8, 2016.
  19. "Paul Arriola - Soccerway". Retrieved February 2, 2019.
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