Michael Parkhurst is coming back to MLS, but not as a member of the New England Revolution.
Columbus and New England announced on Monday that they have agreed to a trade that sends the MLS rights to Parkhurst to the Crew in exchange for the fourth overall selection in Thursday's 2014 MLS SuperDraft and allocation money. The versatile, 29-year-old Parkhurst has already agreed to terms with Columbus and will be added to the club's roster once his International Transfer Certificate (ITC) is received.
Per league and club policy, further terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“We are excited to be adding a top quality player like Michael to our club,” said Crew sporting director and head coach Gregg Berhalter in a statement. “He is an elite player that will have an immediate impact both on and off the field. Michael’s success in Major League Soccer, combined with his proven experience in Europe and with the US men’s national team, make him a valuable piece for our team.”
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Having failed to see the field for German Bundesliga outfit FC Augsburg this season, Parkhurst will be hoping for consistent minutes with the Crew in an effort to convince US head coach Jurgen Klinsmann to include him in his World Cup plans this summer. Parkhurst, who has played right back for Klinsmann, has been limited to just two league appearances since signing with Augsburg back in December 2012.
Parkhurst was a standout defender in MLS during the first four years of his career, claiming the 2005 MLS Rookie of the Year and 2007 MLS Defender of the Year awards. He then joined Danish side FC Nordsjaelland, where he enjoyed five strong seasons before moving to Germany.
“We certainly value Michael as a player having had him with us six seasons ago, but this trade provided us too much to pass up,” Revolution general manager Michael Burns said in a statement released by the club. “This deal provides us with a significant amount of flexibility, both for our salary cap and our roster, and allows us to make additional moves to continue improving our roster.”
Parkhurst has 23 US caps and is in the conversation with Brad Evans, Geoff Cameron, Steve Cherundolo and Eric Lichaj for the starting right back spot ahead of the World Cup in Brazil.