CHARLOTTE, NC (Tuesday, December 28, 2021) – Charlotte FC today announced the Club has signed goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina from Bulgarian champions Ludogorets Razgrad to a contract until 2024 with an option for 2025. The move is pending receipt of a P-1 visa and ITC.
The 29-year-old goalkeeper will occupy an international roster slot on the Club’s inaugural roster.
Kahlina made 36 appearances across all competitions keeping 13 clean sheets over his year-and-a-half spell with Ludogorets. He joined at the end of the 2020-2021 season, starting the club’s final five league matches and helped wrap up Ludogorets’ tenth consecutive Bulgarian title.
Prior to his move to Charlotte, the Croatian started 10 league matches this season and featured in Champions League qualifying rounds and the Europa League group stage.
“Kristijan is a well-rounded goalkeeper that fits into our game model. He makes good decisions when the ball is at his feet and compliments that with good aerial play and shot stopping,” said Sporting Director Zoran Krneta. “He comes to us with experience in European competition and is excited for the challenge of playing in Major League Soccer.”
Prior to joining the Bulgarian champions, the Croatian broke through at HNK Gorica, entrenching himself as the starter for five years. Kahlina led them to promotion to the Croatian first division in his second year and was named captain starting in 2019. Across 157 matches at Gorica, Kahlina kept 53 clean sheets.
Kahlina came through the academy at Croatian powerhouse Dinamo Zagreb before joining NK Vinogradar in the Croatian second division. The goalkeeper started every league match as a 19- and 20-year-old for the 2011/12 and 2012/13 seasons, narrowly missing out on promotion with fourth and fifth place finishes, respectively.
The goalkeeper also spent time at fellow Croatian second division side NK Lucko and Slovenian side FC Koper.
Kahlina made one appearance for the Croatian U19 national team.
Transaction: Charlotte FC acquire goalkeeper Kristijan Kahlina on a permanent transfer from Ludogorets Razgrad.
Name: Kristijan Kahlina
Weight: 185 lbs
Date of Birth: July 24, 1992
Birthplace: Zagreb, Croatia
Last Club: Ludogorets Razgrad
How Acquired: Permanent transfer from Ludogorets Razgrad