DALLAS, Texas - FC Dallas Interim President and General Manager John Alper announced today that the club had officially signed former Manchester United midfielder Mark Wilson to a multi-year deal. Per team rules, specific terms of the deal were not disclosed. Wilson will be designated as a Senior International player, joining Ronnie O'Brien, Carlos Ruiz and Simo Valakari to complete the team's allotment of four Senior Internationals.
The 26-year old Wilson, who got his start in the famed Manchester United youth academy that produced such stars as David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Gary Neville and Paul Scholes, received his approved work visa on Tuesday and returned to Dallas on Wednesday to officially join the Hoops, after spending much of the season training with the club in hopes of earning a contract.
The native of Scunthorpe, England began his professional career in 1997 at the age of 18 when he signed his first pro contract with Manchester United. He had a successful loan spell with Wrexham during that first year, playing in 13 games and scoring four goals. He also became a fixture for England's Under-21 National Team under David Platt and Peter Taylor.
Following the 2000/2001 Premiership season and after making three first team appearances for United, Wilson was sold for 1.5 million pounds to fellow Premiership side Middlesborough where he would spend the next four years. However, Wilson was struck down by a string of injuries while with the Northeast club and would appear only 16 times during his four seasons there. In addition, Wilson would go out on loan assignments to lower division English teams Stoke City, Swansea City, Sheffield Wednesday and Doncaster as well as Scottish side Livingston, playing a further 26 matches and scoring two goals.
In order to make room on the roster for Wilson, FC Dallas was forced to place defender Philip Salyer on waivers on Wednesday. The third-year player appeared in 27 games for Dallas after joining the club in April 2003 from Werder Bremen of the German Bundesliga.
Wilson and his new FC Dallas teammates are back in action this Saturday, September 3 at 7:30 p.m. (CDT) when they take on the San Jose Earthquakes at Pizza Hut Park. Tickets for this game and all other FC Dallas home matches are on sale now. Call 1-888-FCD-GOAL or visit www.fcdallas.net for tickets or more information.
Last Name: Wilson
First Name: Mark
Squad Number: 15
Place of Birth: Scunthorpe, England
Previous Clubs: Manchester United (ENG); Wrexham (ENG); Middlesborough (ENG); Stoke City (ENG); Swansea City (ENG); Sheffield Wednesday (ENG); Doncaster (ENG); Livingston (SCO)
FC Dallas- Sign midfielder Mark Wilson. Place defender Philip Salyer on waivers.