Chivas USA bring veteran New Zealand defender Tony Lochhead back to MLS

Tony Lochhead

Photo Credit: 
REUTERS

Another Kiwi is coming to Major League Soccer.

Chivas USA announced on Wednesday that they have signed veteran defender Tony Lochhead, giving the Goats a proven left back who has made 43 career appearances for the New Zealand national team and previously spent three seasons with the New England Revolution.

Lochhead, 32, has spent the past six seasons with the Wellington Phoenix of Australia’s A-League, setting an all-time club record with 131 career appearances.

The Tauranga, New Zealand, native also appeared in all three of the Kiwis’ matches during the group stage of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, when the team posted draws against Slovakia, Paraguay and defending World Cup champions Italy.

He was also part of the team’s ultimately unsuccessful World Cup qualifying campaign, but did not appear in either of the team’s decisive inter-continental playoff against Mexico in November.

A product of UC Santa Barbara – where he played with Chivas USA goalkeeper Dan Kennedy – Lochhead was selected by the Revolution with the 33rd overall pick in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft. Despite not joining the Revs immediately after the Draft, Lochhead was added to New England’s roster in late 2005. 

A season later, the defender was instrumental in the Revs’ run to the MLS Cup final against the Houston Dynamo, recording a total of 16 appearances before returning to his native country in 2007.

MLS has long been a landing spot for New Zealand internationals, previously boasting players like current Toronto FC head coach Ryan Nelsen and former Columbus Crew favorite Duncan Oughton. Chivas USA have previously featured former Kiwi defender Andrew Boyens and journeyman midfielder Simon Elliott.