TRANSFER TRACKER STATUS: Signing

The Columbus Crew have signed Australian international defender Milos Degenek as a free agent, the club announced Monday.

The 27-year-old’s deal runs through the 2023 season with club options for 2024 and 2025. He last competed for Red Star Belgrade of the Serbian First Division.

“Milos is a center back who brings championship experience and leadership to our squad,” Columbus president and general manager Tim Bezbatchenko said in a release. “In addition to winning domestic and continental titles at the club level, Milos has earned valuable experience with the Australian national team, including the 2018 World Cup. We believe his attributes will serve him well in our league and look forward to seeing him make an impact in our team.”

During his time at Red Star Belgrade, Degenek made 132 appearances in league play while winning three consecutive league titles. He also featured in 24 games (12 each) across the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League.

In 2019, Degenek featured for Al-Hilal Riyadh of Saudi Arabia’s First Division and helped them win the AFC Champions League, Asia’s continental title.

A Croatia native, he’s been capped 33 times by Australia and joined the Socceroos for the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup, the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.

At center back, the MLS Cup 2020 champions are led by Ghana international Jonathan Mensah. They also have MLS veterans Jalil Anibaba and Josh Williams.

Columbus start their 2022 MLS regular season with a Feb. 26 home match vs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC.