Paul Arriola: Career, Girlfriend, Injury & Net Worth

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Paul Arriola is a professional American soccer player in the MLS club FC Dallas and the United States national team. He plays as a Right Winger and is best known for his speed and flair. Paul was also known as the MNT’s most dangerous wide player.

He has shared that he is “heartbroken” as his name has been withdrawn from the squad of World Cup Qatar 2022.

Serving on the soccer field ever since his youthful days in 2010, Paul Arriola has been active on the wing; furthermore, he has 2 Gold Cups in his name.

Paul Arriola
Paul Arriola In A Suit (Source: Instagram)

Earlier, he played for Major League Soccer club D.C. United.

He also featured for IMG Soccer Academy, Arsenal FC, and LA Galaxy as a youth. Later, as a senior, Paul played for Tijuana as well. 

Let’s look at his quick facts table before getting into details.

Paul Arriola | Quick Facts

Full Name Paul Joseph Arriola
Date of Birth February 5, 1995
Birth Place Chula Vista, California, U.S.
Nick Name None 
Religion Unknown 
Nationality American 
Ethnicity White
Zodiac Sign  Aquarius 
Age 29 Years Old
Height 1.68 meters / 5 ft 6 in / 168 cm
Weight 66 kg / 145 lbs
Hair Color Dark brown
Eye Color Hazel blue
Build Athletic 
Father’s Name Art Arriola
Mother’s Name Dawn Arriola
Siblings A Younger Brother
Education Mater Dei Catholic High School
iHigh Virtual Academy
Marital Status Unmarried
Girlfriend  Akela Banuelos
Profession Soccer player
Position Winger
FIFA 22 Rating 72 (Overall)
Youth Affiliations IMG Soccer Academy
Arsenal FC
LA Galaxy
Senior Affiliations D.C. United
Current Teams FC Dallas
Active Years 2010-present
Net Worth Over $1.5 Million 
Social Media Instagram, Twitter
Merch  Notebook, Soccer Trading Card
Last Update March, 2024

Paul Arriola | Early Life

Paul (fully named Paul Joseph Arriola) was born on February 5, 1995, under Aquarius’ sun sign. He was born in Chula Vista, California, U.S.

His parents are Dawn Arriola and Art Arriola. Additionally, he has a younger brother.

Arriola is of Mexican descent, as his great-grandparents immigrated from Mexico to the United States. 

As for his academic background, Arriola first attended the Mater Dei Catholic High School in Chula Vista, CA., and then iHigh Virtual Academy in San Diego.

After this, Arriola took classes at Southwestern College.

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Paul Arriola | Soccer Career

Paul Arriola commenced playing ever since his high school days. Initially, he was featured for the IMG Soccer Academy.

Following it, he played for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy club Arsenal FC based in Temecula, California. 

During his tenure, he received a professional contract from the Galaxy. However, he opted to play for the Club Tijuana of Liga MX. 

“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.”
-Paul Arriola

On July 6, 2013, Arriola made his club debut against Club América at Petco Park in San Diego. Later, he joined the Los Angeles Galaxy. 


On July 19, 2013, Arriola made his professional league debut against Club Atlas to open the 2013–14 Liga MX season.

He played as a second-half substitute during his tenure while assisting Darío Benedetto’s goal. Later, he made another goal in CONCACAF Champions League against C.D. Victoria.

D.C. United 

Arriola signed a deal with the Major League Soccer side D.C. United on August 9, 2017.

To give his rights from the Galaxy to D.C. United, they paid the club fee of $3,000,000 with added allocation money for his rights.

Advancing on August 13, he made the club debut over Real Salt Lake; however, his foremost goal only came against the New York Red Bulls.

Paul Arriola
Paul Arriola During The Match (Source:

To illustrate, his goal was on October 22, 2017, in RFK Stadium. 

During his first season with the team, Arriola made 11 appearances, two assists, and only one goal.

Following the season, he improved the season with his own two scores at Audi Field. He ended with 28 appearances, seven goals, and eight assists.

He also starred as both a right midfielder and right back and played with D.C. United.

During the 2020 pre-season, he appeared in a game against Orlando City but had an injury at that time.

He returned to the field from an injury in D.C. United’s last regular season game, which finished in a 2-3, Arriola was loaned out to Swansea City.

Afterward, he first played for Swansea on February 1, 2021, against Manchester City. He was set to play for the 2020–21 EFL Championship season.

Due to his injury, his loan gameplay with the team ended on March 31, 2021. In January 2022, FC Dallas acquired the athlete in an MLS-record trade from DC United.

FC Dallas

If Paul reaches specific performance-based metrics, he in exchange for 1.5 million in General Allocation Money in 2022 and $500,000 in 2023. D.C. United would also retain 30% of any transfer outside of MLS, with an additional $300,000 in General Allocation Money as of January 26, 2022.  

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International Team 

Paul Arriola made his international game debut during the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico. In Mexico, he made three starts in four matches.

Indeed, he was also a part of the 2011 CONCACAF U-17 Championship; however, he didn’t appear in any of its games due to his injury. 

During his tenure as a United States U18 squad member, he requested Mexican citizenship.

To elaborate, it was the friendlies match against France and Uruguay, and he chose a domestic spot rather than the foreign player spot.

Paul Arriola
Paul Arriola Kissing Gold Cup (Source: Instagram)

Likewise, he has played at the 2014 Dallas Cup, the 2014 NTC Invitational, and the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup. After playing with the United States U20 squad, he played for the United States U23 squad. 

As a youth, he last played at Toyota Stadium in Frisco, Texas. Not to mention, he made his senior debut against Puerto Rico on May 22, 2016. 

Furthermore, he played in the 2019 CONCACAF Gold Cup in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

In 2021-2022 CONCACAF World Cup qualifying, he scored a header in USMNT’s penultimate game, where the USMNT defeated Panama 5-1, virtually guaranteeing a place in Qatar.

Sadly, he was not selected for World Cup Qatar 2022.


Year Apps Goals
Career 237 39


  • Two-time winner of the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2017 and 2021

World Cup 2022 Qatar

Paul Arriola was expected to play in FIFA 2022; unfortunately, he did not make it to the national team of the United States.

There are many good wingers the USMNT has for the tournament, such as Tim Weah, Christian Pulisic, Gio Reyna, Brenden Aaronson, and Jordan Morris. As of that, he did not make it to Gregg Berhalter’s final 26-man roster for FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022

He expressed, “This year, my goal was to put myself in the best position possible to get to this point…The one thing I know for sure is that I will be rooting for my teammates when they play, and I hope our country comes together to support this amazing group.”

Paul Arriola | Injury

As an athlete, Arriola has faced several injuries during his tenure. On June 20, 2018, Arriola faced a hip injury, which kept him out of the games for 13 days. 

On February 15, 2020, Arriola struggled with a knee injury during the pre-season game against Orlando City.

He had a cruciate ligament rupture and missed the 2020 MLS season.

Paul Arriola during his 2020 injury
Paul Arriola During His 2020 Injury (Source: Instagram)

Right then, he missed 264 days of his gameplay which took him out for 55 games. As for his recent injury, Arriola has suffered from a quadriceps injury. 

Due to his injury, his loan with Swansea ended, and he has been sidelined for 4–6 weeks.

He has also been part of United States youth national team setups and was part of the squad for the 2011 CONCACAF U-17 championship but could not play in any matches because of an injury.

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Paul Arriola | Controversy

Arriola apologized for the offensive tweets he made a decade ago that resurfaced in 2013.

He was playing for Swansea City on loan from D.C. United and expressed he was “ashamed” by the tweets and insisted he has grown as a human since the time he posted the tweets.

The tweets were in one group of screengrabs from 2012 when Arriola was 17 years old and a member of the Los Angeles Galaxy youth academy.

In the tweets, he said disapproval over female color commentators, quotes a Rick Ross lyric containing a racial slur, uses the same racial slur while interacting with a friend, and makes a joke about Black people swimming.

At the time, he was a member of Swansea City; similarly, the club released a statement saying that they did not want their club member to condone any form of discriminatory behavior from anyone associated with their club.

Paul Arriola | Net Worth and Salary

Earlier, Arriola came into contract with Tijuana in Mexico in 2013 and moved to the United in 2017 for a club-record $3 million fee.

As of 2022, the soccer player is estimated to have over $1.5 million net worth.

Furthermore, he makes around $11,536 weekly while playing for FC Dallas. Arriola’s current market value is $4.11 million. 

Paul Arriola | Personal Life 

Paul Arriola lost his father, Arturo Arriola III, who passed away due to an apparent heart attack.

According to the sources, his father used to be an alcoholic and was just 48 when he passed away. 

Unfortunately, alcoholism was the same reason why his parents separated. However, he chose to live with his father and often feared alcohol would take his father away from him. 

He said, “It’s a disease. It eats you up. He was good when he wasn’t drinking, and he knew that is how he wanted to be, but when there were situations of stress or unhappiness, it’s very easy to go back to it.”

Apart from his father, Arriola’s paternal great-grandfather also passed away due to cirrhosis of the liver.

Due to all these reasons, Paul Arriola keeps himself away from alcohol. 

Paul Arriola | Relationships & Girlfriend 

Paul Arriola is dating Akela Banuelos, and together, they run a Youtube Channel. The channel is named “Kickin’ It with Akela and Paul.” 

According to Akela’s Facebook profile, she is from Los Angeles, and she is also a part of Galaxy’s organization.

Akela has a degree in Veterinary Medicine that she gained back in 2017. 

Paul Arriola And His Girlfriend
Paul Arriola And His Fiance Akela Banuelos (Source: Instagram)

Moreover, she has also worked for the Veterinary Healthcare Center in Monterey Park and Hemopet in Garden Grove. She is currently involved with Jaanuu, a medical apparel brand. 

Besides medicine, Akela is also a model and has been a part of the 2018 Miss Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

As of 2022, the beautiful couple has decided to get committed to the relationship and has made it stronger by getting engaged.

He had proposed to his long-time girlfriend Akela and shared it by captioning Fiance in one of his posts on Instagram. 

Social Media Presence

Paul Arriola is on Instagram as Paul Arriola (@paularriola), with 67.7k followers. You can check out his social media platforms if you are interested in his personal uploads and posts.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Paul Arriola (@paularriola)

Additionally, he can be found on Twitter as Paul Arriola (@PaulArriola), with 26.1k followers.

Likewise, his girlfriend Akela Banuelos is on Instagram with her real name, @akelamonique, with 4920 followers. 

Apart from it, the duo is on YouTube with their channel “Kickin’ It with Akela and Paul.” 

Popularity Graph

This is the popularity graph of Paul Arriola.

Paul Arriola
Paul Arriola Popularity Graph (Source: Google)

Paul’s search rate hiked for his role in World Cup 2022; unfortunately, he will not be playing for the United States this time.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the jersey number of Paul Arriola?

Paul Arriola featured in jersey number 19 for Swansea City F.C., 11 for the United States men’s national under-23 squad, and 7 for the United States men’s national soccer team.

Also, in MSL cub FC Dallas he wears jersey number 7.

Is Paul Arriola married?

No, Paul is not married yet; however, he is engaged to his fiancé Akela Banuelos.

They have been in a relationship for a long time.

Does Paul Arriola have kids?

No, Arriola does not have any children. He is engaged; both Arriola and his fiancé are focused on their career.

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Rajani Gurung
Rajani Gurung
Hey, I'm Rajani! As a digital content writer, I write for several websites on a wide range of topics. At Playersbio, I cover to write about hot trending celebrities and news. My professional experience makes me write the hard topics in a simplified manner for easiness.

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