Frederic Brillant signs with New York City FC
New York City FC

New York City FC add experience, sign 30-year-old French defender Frederic Brillant

New York City FC added some experience to their back line on Thursday, when the club announced that they have signed 30-year-old French defender Frederic Brillant from Belgian club K.V. Oostende.

NYCFC used Targeted Allocation Money in the purchase of Brillant. Per league and club policy, further terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Brillant comes to New York after spending the last two-and-a-half seasons with Oostende. He started 34 league games as Oostende finished mid-table in both the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons, but has taken on more of a reserve role this year, appearing in 11 of the fourth-place club’s 23 Belgian first-division matches.

“Frederic will bring leadership and experience to our defense,” NYCFC sporting director Claudio Reyna said in a club statement. “He was eager to join us and that’s one thing we always look for when recruiting a player. It’s important to us that players are passionate about playing for this club. With his strength and his ability to anticipate danger, he could be a real asset to the team.”

Brillant will join an NYCFC backline that already features center backs Jason Hernandez, Ethan White and Jefferson Mena. He’s by far the most experienced of NYCFC’s six offseason acquisitions, with White, the oldest of the club’s previous five additions this winter, five years his junior.

Brillant began his pro career in 2005 in the Belgian lower divisions with RE Bertrix, eventually moving to Oostende, who were then in the Belgian second division, in 2011. He moved to the Belgian top flight in 2012 with Beerschot AC, then returned to Oostende after they were promoted to the first division for the 2013-14 campaign. Brillant has seven goals in 110 Belgian Pro League appearances over the last four seasons.

“To have more experience in the back will give the club different options,” said NYCFC head coach Patrick Vieira. “We’ve brought in a number of young players recently so to add some experience is important. Frederic is very composed with the ball at his feet and has a great understanding of the game.”