João Paulo is a Brazilian midfielder who joined the club on loan from Botafogo in January 2020 as one of the team's designated players. He then became a permanent signing in January 2021 and had a breakout season, earning MLS All-Star, MLS Best XI and Team MVP honors, as well as being a finalist for the Landon Donovan MLS MVP award.
In 2022, JP injured the ACL in the Concacaf Champions League final and lost the rest of that season. Then, he started a race against time to be available for the FIFA Club World Cup. He was ready for the match and played 22 minutes in the loss to Al Ahly coming from the bench.
JP proved his comeback in the 2023 season with his solid performance. He was not the most valuable player, but he was a key factor in the defense. He played in 39 games in total and contributed four assists.
The club had the option to extend JP's contract for one more year and now he is set until the end of the 2024 season.