Sporting Kansas City striker Diego Rubio has been named to the Chile Men’s National Team for two upcoming friendly matches in Asia, the Football Federation of Chile announced on Thursday.
Rubio is one of three Sporting KC forwards who will join their respective national teams during the FIFA international window in September. Scotland’s Johnny Russell and Hungary’s Daniel Salloi will venture to Europe next week for the inaugural UEFA Nations League.
All three players will be available for Saturday’s pivotal away match at Seattle Sounders FC — slated for 3 p.m. CT on FOX Sports Kansas City, FOX Sports Midwest Plus, UniMas and streaming live on Twitter at @UnivisionSports — before going abroad for international duty.
Rubio and Chile are set to face Japan on Sept. 7 at the Sapporo Dome in Sapporo, Japan, and South Korea on Sept. 11 at Suwon World Cup Stadium in Suwon, South Korea. Chile are No. 12 in the latest FIFA rankings and two-time defending Copa America champions, having won the continental title in 2015 and 2016. Rubio is part of a 24-man squad assembled by head coach Reinaldo Rueda, which also includes the likes of FC Barcelona midfielder Arturo Vidal and Besiktas defender Gary Medel.
The 25-year-old Rubio has earned his first selection to Chile’s senior national team in seven years. He collected his previous three caps for La Roja in 2011 at age 18, featuring in friendlies against Paraguay, France and Mexico. He then went on to play eight matches at the U-20 level from 2012-2013.
Now in his third season with Sporting KC, Rubio has tallied seven goals and five assists in 520 minutes of MLS action this year, including four goals and two assists during a brilliant month of August. He leads MLS with 1.21 goals per 90 minutes played, and his 58.3 scoring percentage (seven goals on 12 shots) is currently the third-best single-season mark in MLS history.
Goalkeepers: Gabriel Arias (Racing), Brayan Cortes (Colo-Colo), Lawrence Vigouroux (Swindon Town)
Defenders: Gary Medel (Besiktas), Mauricio Isla (Fenerbahce), Enzo Roco (Besiktas), Paulo Diaz (Al-Ahli), Miiko Albornoz (Hannover), Guillermo Maripan (Alaves), Igor Lichnovsky (Cruz Azul), Cristian Cuevas (Austria Wien), Francisco Sierralta (Parma)
Midfielders: Arturo Vidal (Barcelona), Charles Aranguiz (Bayer Leverkusen), Pablo Hernandez (Independiente), Erick Pulgar (Bologna), Lorenzo Reyes (Atlas), Diego Valdes (Morelia)
Forwards: Fabian Orellana (Eibar), Angelo Henriquez (Universidad de Chile), Angelo Sagal (Pachuca), Martin Rodriguez (Pumas), Diego Rubio (Sporting Kansas City), Ignacio Jeraldino (Audax Italiano)