Columbus Crew SC sign Portuguese winger Pedro Santos

Columbus Crew SC unveiled a major reinforcement for the season’s stretch run on Tuesday, announcing the signing of Portuguese midfielder Pedro Santos as a Designated Player via a Discovery Signing.

Santos, 29, arrives from Sporting Braga with 10 years of professional experience, including action in Europa League and the Primeira Liga, Portugal’s top flight. Crew SC’s sixth-ever Designated Player, he joins Federico Higuain and Jonathan Mensah as Columbus max out their roster allotment of three DPs for the first time.

“We are excited to welcome Pedro Santos to Columbus Crew SC and look forward to him making an immediate impact on this club this season,” said Crew SC sporting director and head coach Gregg Berhalter in a club release.

“Pedro brings extensive tenure at a high European level and also has Europa League experience, which we believe will be an asset to Crew SC and will fit well into our style of play.”

Though the specific terms of the transfer were not disclosed, the transaction for Santos represents Crew SC’s largest acquisition transfer fee in club history. Santos will officially be added to Columbus’ roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate and P-1 Visa.

Primarily a winger, Santos began his pro career with fourth-tier side Casa Pia AC before moving up to Portugal’s second division with Leixoes SC. He went on to play in the Primeira Liga for Vitoria Setubal and Rio Ave FC, and spent time in Romania’s first division with Astra Giurgiu. To date, he has made 225 appearances (132 starts) at the club level.

Columbus’ next match is a visit from the Chicago Fire on Saturday (7:30 pm ET | MLS LIVE).

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