After spending more than a decade with the Colorado Rapids, midfielder Pablo Mastroeni has packed his bags and moved further west.
The Rapids and LA Galaxy announced on Monday morning that they have agreed to a trade that will see Mastroeni leave the place he called home for much of the past 12 years. The 36-year-old, who holds the Rapids franchise records in both games (225) and minutes played (18,669) and helped lead the club to their first MLS Cup title in 2010, will rejoin head coach Bruce Arena while at the Galaxy.
Mastroeni played under Arena on the US men's national team from 2001-06, playing in both the 2002 and 2006 World Cups.
“It will be difficult to leave the Rapids after growing so close to the club and the fans in Colorado,” Mastroeni said in a statement. “I want to thank all the teammates, coaches and staff I worked with over the years, as well as Stan Kroenke for the chance to play at such a beautiful stadium like Dick’s Sporting Goods Park.
"My sincere gratitude goes especially to all the fans, who have given so much to me and the team. Though I am excited for a new challenge, Colorado and the Rapids will always hold a special place in my heart.”
In addition to Mastroeni, the Galaxy received the rights to midfielder Baggio Husidic in exchange for an international roster slot through the end of 2014 and a second-round pick in that year's MLS SuperDraft. Husidic currently plays with Swedish side Hammarby IF, where he is coached by former Galaxy player and assistant Gregg Berhalter.
Mastroeni has already arrived in Southern California and the veteran will be available to reporters for the first time following the completion of Monday's training session.
“While it is sad to see Pablo leave the Rapids, we are grateful for everything he gave to the club and our fans,” Rapids president said Tim Hinchey in a statement released by the club. “For all his achievements, including leading the team to the 2010 MLS Cup, he is and forever will be a Colorado Rapids legend. We look forward to seeing his name and number in our Gallery of Honor someday soon.”