COLUMBUS — Columbus Crew SC today announced that the Club has selected Nigerian forward Fanendo Adi (pronounced: FA-nen-doe AH-dee) off Major League Soccer’s Waiver List. Adi, 29, is a six-year Major League Soccer veteran who has won one MLS Cup (2015) while making 138 regular-season appearances (109 starts) and registering 55 goals and 14 assists. The forward most recently played for FC Cincinnati from 2018-2019, helping Cincinnati win the 2018 USL Regular-Season Championship. Adi will not occupy a Designated Player spot on Crew SC's roster.
“We want to welcome Fanendo to Columbus Crew SC,” said Crew SC President and General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “Fanendo is a forward whose proven ability as a goal scorer in our League makes him a valuable addition to our team. We recognize that last year was a difficult year for Fanendo both personally and professionally and we believe this new opportunity will be beneficial for him, as it reunites him with Caleb, under whom he found career-high success. As a Club, we believe in what he can bring to this squad as a player and teammate and that he is someone who can provide us with additional offensive options on the field. We will be working on integrating him into the squad and we look forward to his contributions to the Club.”
Before joining FC Cincinnati midway through the 2018 season, Adi played for the Portland Timbers from 2014-2018. During his time with the Timbers, Adi scored 51 goals and provided 14 assists in 126 regular-season appearances. The forward played a key role in guiding Portland to winning MLS Cup and the Western Conference Championship in 2015. Notably, Adi was twice named the Timbers’ Golden Boot Winner, leading the team with 16 strikes – a single-season career-high for the forward – in both the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Adi also made seven appearances in Concacaf Champions League action during his tenure with the Portland Timbers, scoring four goals.
Prior to his time in MLS, Adi plied his trade in Europe for six years, featuring for several teams including FC Copenhagen of Denmark’s First Division (2013-2014); two stints with AS Trencin of Slovakia’s topflight (2009-2011, 2012-2013); as well as Ukranian First Division sides SC Tavriya Simferopol (2011-2012), FC Dynamo Kyiv (2011) and FC Metalurh Donetsk (2011). Internationally, Adi has represented Nigeria at the Under-23 level, earning two caps in 2011.
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The Crew’s 2020 MLS preseason is currently underway in Chula Vista, California. Crew SC departs to Cancun, Mexico on January 29 before traveling to Tucson, Arizona on February 10 to participate in the 2020 Visit Tucson Sun Cup, which is set to take place from February 15-22.
The Black & Gold begin the 2020 MLS regular season at MAPFRE Stadium against New York City FC, on Sunday, March 1 at 12:30 p.m. ET. Tickets to all matches on the Crew SC home schedule are available now online at ColumbusCrewSC.com or via phone. For access to purchasing FC Cincinnati tickets, call 614-447-CREW. Local broadcast and promotional schedule information will be released at a later date.
With the addition of Adi, Crew SC's current 2020 roster – listed alphabetically below – now stands at 26 players. Crew 2020 MLS SuperDraft selections Miguel Berry, Remi Prieur and Danny Griffin are currently with the team in preseason as unsigned.
Goalkeepers (3): Jon Kempin, Matt Lampson, Eloy Room
Defenders (9): Harrison Afful, Chris Cadden, Waylon Francis, Aboubacar Keita, Jonathan Mensah, Axel Sjoberg, Milton Valenzuela, Josh Williams, Vito Wormgoor
Midfielders (10): Artur, Sebastian Berhalter, Luis Diaz, Hector Jimenez, Youness Mokhtar, Aidan Morris, Darlington Nagbe, Pedro Santos, Wil Trapp, Lucas Zelarayan
Forwards (4): Fanendo Adi, Jordan Hamilton, JJ Williams, Gyasi Zardes
TRANSACTION: Columbus Crew SC acquires forward Fanendo Adi from Major League Soccer’s Waiver List on January 27, 2020.
Name: Fanendo Adi (FA-nen-doe AH-dee)
Born: October 10, 1990 in Lagos, Nigeria
Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria
Acquired: Acquired by Crew SC on January 27, 2020
Previous Experience: FC Cincinnati (2018-2019), Portland Timbers (2014-2018), FC Copenhagen (2013-2014), AS Trencin (2012-2013), SC Tavriya Simferopol (2011-2012), FC Dynamo Kyiv (2011), FC Metalurh Donetsk (2011), AS Trencin (2009-2011)