Transfer Tracker

Colorado Rapids acquire defender Aboubacar Keita from Columbus Crew


  • COL receive: Aboubacar Keita
  • CLB receive: Up to $450k GAM

The Colorado Rapids have acquired center back Aboubacar Keita in a trade with the Columbus Crew, the clubs announced Wednesday.

Colorado will send $300,000 in General Allocation Money to Columbus in exchange for Keita, with the Crew potentially receiving an additional $150,000 in conditional GAM should the player reach certain performance marks.

“Bouba is a young, athletic player who is comfortable on the ball and has all the attributes to become a physically dominant defender,” Colorado executive VP & general manager Padraig Smith said in Wednesday's release. “We are committed to targeting the best young players in the domestic market, and in Keita, we believe we have acquired a player with significant upside who is only beginning to scratch the surface of his potential.”

Keita, 21, is a Columbus Academy product that spent the 2018 season with the University of Virginia. He signed a homegrown deal with Columbus in 2019 and has made 37 first-team appearances since, totaling 2,695 minutes. He was also capped eight times by the US U-20 national team in 2019.

Colorado have become one of the league's most sound defensive teams under head coach Robin Fraser and are coming off a successful 2021 where they finished atop the Western Conference standings.

“From the time he joined the Academy in 2016 to helping us capture MLS Cup in 2020 and the Campeones Cup last September, Bouba’s hard work and dedication on and off the field has been truly appreciated. We wish him all the best in Colorado,” said Crew president & GM Tim Bezbatchenko.