Center back joins Black & Gold from Croatian First Division
June 9, 2023
COLUMBUS – The Columbus Crew have acquired Ukrainian defender Yevhen Cheberko from NK Osijek of the Croatian First Division. Cheberko – who will occupy an international roster slot pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate and P-1 Visa – will be added to the Crew roster when the MLS secondary transfer window opens on July 5. The contract with the Club will run through 2026.
“Yevhen is a talented player with a high ceiling who will help solidify the core of our backline and provide more tactical flexibility,” said Crew President and General Manager Tim Bezbatchenko. “Yevhen has a nice balance of defensive and offensive attributes in his game and will be a welcomed addition during the summer transfer window. I’d like to recognize Issa Tall, Neil McGuinness and our entire leadership team who established strong processes to identify and recruit players like Yevhen who possess the characteristics we desire for our Club. Their efforts were critical to acquiring Yevhen, and we look forward to him joining us in Columbus and making an impact once the window opens.”
Cheberko comes to the Black & Gold after most recently spending the 2021-23 seasons with NK Osijek in the Croatian First Division, Hrvatska Nogometna Liga. He appeared in 58 total matches for the White and Blues, helping his side finish second in league play in 2020-21 and rank among the league’s top-three teams each of his three years with the club.
A UFK Dnipropetrovsk and FC Dnipo youth product, Cheberko made his professional debut in a Ukrainian Premier League match for Dnipro on July 24, 2016. He scored two goals in 14 matches before transferring to Zorya Luhansk, where he contributed in 53 league matches and six UEFA Europa League matches from 2017-2020.
In 2020, Cheberko joined Austrian Bundesliga side LASK, appearing in six matches across all competition. On Feb. 5, 2021, he was loaned to NK Osijek before the transfer became permanent on Jan. 19, 2022.
A Ukrainian Youth International, Cheberko played in 64 total matches for the U-16 to U-21 teams and made his senior debut in an international friendly against France on Oct. 7, 2020.
TRANSACTION: Columbus Crew acquire defender Yevhen Cheberko for an undisclosed transfer fee from Croatian side NK Osijek on June 9, 2023. His contract with the Club will run through 2026.
Name: Yevhen Ihorovych Cheberko
Weight: 166 lbs.
Born: Jan. 23, 1998, in Melitopol, Ukraine
Hometown: Melitopol, Ukraine
Acquired: Transferred to Columbus Crew on June 9, 2023
Previous Experience: Dnipro (2016-17), Zorya Luhansk (2017-20), LASK (2020-22), Osijek (2021-23).
COURTESY COLUMBUS CREW COMMUNICATIONS