Press Releases

Columbus Crew acquire forward Diego Rossi as Designated Player  

COLUMBUS – The Columbus Crew have acquired forward Diego Rossi from Turkish Süper Lig side Fenerbahçe S.K. for an undisclosed transfer fee. Rossi – the youngest player in MLS history to earn the league’s Golden Boot (2020) and a major contributor to LAFC’s 2019 Supporters Shield squad – joins the Crew as a Designated Player after spending 2021-2023 in Europe. He will be added to the Black & Gold roster upon receipt of his International Transfer Certificate. The 25-year-old’s contract runs through the 2026 season with a Club option for 2027.

Diego Rossi Signed to Columbus Crew

“Diego is a winner and an exciting, skillful player, and we are excited to welcome him to the Crew,” said President and General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “He has a natural ability to score and create goals, and he has further demonstrated his exceptional quality over the past few seasons while competing in Europe. Diego is a great addition to our dynamic attack, and as importantly, he is a true fit for our Club’s desired culture and style of play.  

“We thank the Haslam, Johnson and Edwards families for their ongoing support of the Club, which allows us to acquire a player of Diego’s caliber. I also thank Wilfried, Issa, Neil, Corey, Marc and our entire soccer administration team, whose work was pivotal in completing this deal. We are proud that Diego has chosen Columbus, and we look forward to him contributing to our team at a high level as we work to win more trophies for our city.”

Bezbatchenko on Diego Rossi

On Sept. 1, 2021, Rossi initially joined Fenerbahçe on loan before transferring permanently on April 15, 2022. During his tenure in Turkey, the Uruguayan international and his side captured the Turkish Cup in 2023 and finished second among Süper Lig clubs in back-to-back campaigns (2021-2022 and 2022-2023). He posted 10 goals in 64 league matches, appeared in 16 Europa Leagues contests and featured in two UEFA Champions League games with Fenerbahçe. 

In MLS competition, Rossi – a two-time MLS All-Star selection (2019 and 2021) – has recorded 48 goals and 21 assists in 104 regular season matches (100 starts) and one goal and two assists in three postseason games (all starts) for LAFC.

Rossi became the youngest Golden Boot winner in MLS history in 2020 after leading the league with 14 goals across 19 matches, setting a career high in goals per game (.737). For his stellar performance, he earned MLS Young Player of the Year, MLS Best XI, MLS is Back Tournament Golden Boot, MLS is Back Young Player of the Tournament, MLS is Back Tournament Best XI and 2021 ESPY Awards Best MLS Player honors. 

Prior to the start of the 2018 MLS season, Rossi signed with LAFC as the second-youngest Designated Player in league history at the age of 19. He notched 12 goals and nine assists in 32 league matches and received MLS “20 Under 20” accolades as he propelled his team to its first-ever playoff berth. 

In 2019, Rossi played in all 34 regular season matches (33 starts) and tallied 16 goals and seven assists, leading LAFC to its first Supporters’ Shield with what was then a league-record 72 points.

Rossi scored six goals in 19 matches during the 2021 season. 

A native of Montevideo, Uruguay, Rossi entered the Peñarol youth system at 12-years old and led the U-17 club to the league title. He made his First Team regular season debut on April 29, 2016 and scored his first goal five days later. He appeared in 46 total matches with the Peñarol First Team, registering 13 goals overall, including the Copa Libertadores, South America’s premier club competition.

Rossi has earned seven caps for Uruguay and scored his first international goal in a friendly against Panama on June 11, 2022. He made his senior debut in a CONMEBOL World Cup Qualifier against Chile on March 28, 2022.

Rossi also represented Uruguay with the Under-17, U-20 and U-23 National Teams. He totaled 10 goals in 39 contests while helping Uruguay win the U-20 South American Championship and added one goal and one assist for the U-23s in 2020 Olympic Qualifying.

TRANSACTION: Acquired via transfer from Turkish Süper Lig side Fenerbahçe S.K.B on Aug. 2, 2023. To be added to the roster upon receipt of International Transfer Certificate. Contract runs through the 2026 season with a Club option for 2027 as a Designated Player.

Name: Diego Rossi

Position: Forward

Height: 5’7”

Weight: 145 lbs.  

Born:March 5, 1998 in Montevideo, Uruguay


Acquired: Via transfer from Fenerbahçe S.K.B

Previous Experience: Peñarol (2015-17), Los Angeles Football Club (2018-21), Fenerbahçe (2022-23)

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