Columbus Crew SC gets tougher to beat with signing of free-agent forward Bradley Wright-Phillips

Bradley Wright-Phillips NY Red Bulls (2014 photo by billtnj via wikipedia commons)

Wright-Phillips is a three-time MLS Supporters’ Shield winner, a two-time MLS Golden Boot winner and a two-time MLS Best XI selection;
Veteran forward’s 116 goals in MLS regular-season action are sixth all-time in League history

COLUMBUS – Columbus Crew SC recently announced that it has signed free agent forward Bradley Wright-Phillips. Wright-Phillips most recently played for Los Angeles FC and has eight years of experience in Major League Soccer, where his 116 regular-season goals make him the sixth-highest goal scorer of all-time in League history. 

Recently, Wright-Phillips was named to Major League Soccer’s prestigious “The 25 Greatest” list, capturing the 25 brightest stars in the League’s storied 25-year history that just concluded with Crew SC taking home its second Cup title.

Wright-Phillips joins Columbus with a host of accolades to his name: a three-time MLS Supporters’ Shield Winner (2013, 2015, 2018), a two-time MLS Golden Boot winner (2014, 2016), a two-time MLS Best XI selection (2014, 2016), a Concacaf Best XI selection (2018), a two-time MLS All-Star (2014, 2018), and a recipient of the MLS Comeback Player of the Year Award (2020).

“We are thrilled that Bradley has chosen to join Crew SC as we look to build off of our 2020 MLS Cup title and continue to contend for trophies headed into 2021,” said Crew SC President & General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “As one of the most proficient strikers in our League over the last decade, Bradley brings valuable veteran experience to our attacking corps and we look forward to his contributions. We also believe Bradley’s quality character and mentality is an asset to every team he has played for and has played a critical role in all the personal success he’s had in his career.”

During 2020, Wright-Phillips made 18 regular-season appearances (14 starts) for Los Angeles FC, registering eight goals and six assists. Before spending the 2020 season with LAFC, Wright-Philips played for the New York Red Bulls from 2013-2019, where he made 195 regular-season appearances (164 starts) while scoring 108 goals – the most in club history – and providing 28 assists. During his time with the Red Bulls, the forward helped the club win three MLS Supporters’ Shields (2013, 2015, 2018) while being named the New York Red Bulls Most Valuable Player on three occasions (2014, 2017, 2018). 

While playing for the Red Bulls, Wright-Phillips became the first player in MLS history to score 20 or more goals in three different seasons (2014, 2016, 2018), as well as the first player in League history to score 15 or more goals in five consecutive seasons (2014-2018). In addition to his MLS experience, the English forward also made 14 appearances in the Concacaf Champions League (all starts), scoring four goals and providing five assists for the Red Bulls.

A product of the Manchester City academy, Wright-Phillips played in 32 contests for the Premier League side from 2004-2006. While in England, the forward also played for Southampton FC from 2006-2009, Plymouth Argyle FC from 2009-2011, Charlton Athletic FC from 2011-2013 and Brentford FC (2013). While with Charlton Athletic, Wright-Philips helped the club win the 2011-2012 Football League One championship.

At the international level, Wright-Phillips represented England at the Under-20 level, earning five caps for the Three Lions.

The core of Crew SC’s 2020 MLS Cup-winning roster is set to return for the 2021 season. Crew SC exercised the contract options on eight players from its 2020 roster. With 14 other players already under contract for the 2021 season, the addition of Wright-Phillips gives the Black & Gold a roster that currently features 23 players.

Crew SC’s current roster headed into 2021, listed alphabetically by position, is below:

Goalkeepers (4): Evan Bush, Jon Kempin, Matt Lampson, Eloy Room

Defenders (8): Harrison Afful, Chris Cadden, Aboubacar Keita, Grant Lillard, Jonathan Mensah, Milton Valenzuela, Josh Williams, Vito Wormgoor

Midfielders (8): Artur, Sebastian Berhalter, Luis Diaz, Derrick Etienne, Jr., Aidan Morris, Darlington Nagbe, Pedro Santos, Lucas Zelarayan

Forwards (3): Miguel Berry, Bradley Wright-Phillips, Gyasi Zardes

TRANSACTION: Columbus Crew SC signs free agent forward Bradley Wright-Phillips on December 23, 2020.

Name: Bradley Wright-Phillips
Position: Forward
Height: 5’8”
Weight: 155
Born: March 12, 1985 in London, England
Hometown: London, England
Citizenship: England  
Acquired: Signed by Crew SC from free agency on December 23, 2020
Previous Experience: Los Angeles FC (2020), New York Red Bulls (2013-2019), Brentford FC (2013), Charlton Athletic (2011-2013), Plymouth Argyle (2009-2011), Southampton (2006-2009), Manchester City (2006-2006)


ABOUT COLUMBUS CREW SC
Columbus Crew SC (Soccer Club) is the first club in Major League Soccer. Crew SC is operated by The Edwards Family and Haslam Sports Group. The Black & Gold are the 2020 MLS Cup Champions. The Club won its first MLS Cup championship in 2008 and also won the 2002 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup as well as MLS Supporters’ Shield titles in 2004, 2008 and 2009. The 2020 campaign was the Crew’s 25th season in MLS and the 21st season at historic MAPFRE Stadium — the first soccer-specific stadium in the United States. 

Website: ColumbusCrewSC.com | Twitter: @ColumbusCrewSC | Instagram: @ColumbusCrewSC | Hashtag: #Crew96 | Facebook.com/columbuscrewsc | Snapchat: ColumbusCrewSC | App: ColumbusCrewSC.com/app | Stadium: MAPFRE Stadium | Training Facility: Crew SC Training Center at Obetz | Future Training Facility (2021): OhioHealth Performance Center | New, downtown stadium coming July 2021

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