Columbus Crew SC has acquired Amro Tarek from Spanish La Liga side Real Betis. The 6’2” defender joins the Black & Gold on loan for the duration of the 2016 Major League Soccer campaign. Here are five things you should know about Tarek.
1. Tarek began his professional career in Germany.
The defender spent three seasons in Germany with 1. FC Magdeburg II, SC Freiburg II and VFL Wolfsburg II. In his first year with Magdeburg’s Under-19 side, Tarek made 22 appearances scoring six goals and delivering five assists. The following year he appeared in 15 matches for Freiburg’s Under-21 team. During the 2012-13 season, Tarek made 20 appearances for the Wolfsburg reserves recording one goal and two assists.
2. His favorite soccer memory is winning the Lev Yashin Cup.
In 2011, Tarek won the Lev Yashin Cup with SC Freiburg II. The annual competition is an international tournament of U-21 sides played in Russia. That year, Freiburg defeated OFK Beograd 6-0 and Tarek scored the game-winning goal.
3. Tarek is eligible for both the United States and Egypt national teams.
Born in Los Angeles in 1992, Tarek grew up in Asyut, Egypt. He has made one appearance for Egypt’s U-20s but remains eligible for both countries at the senior level. Before joining Real Betis in 2015, Tarek played two seasons in the Egyptian Premier League. He made 45 appearances for El Gouna FC.
4. He shares a Seville connection with Cedrick Mabwati
Both Tarek and Crew SC midfielder Cedrick Mabwati have spent time at Real Betis, though their tenures did not overlap. Tarek joined the La Liga side in July 2015, shortly after Mabwati made his move to Columbus. Mabwati made 23 appearances for Real Betis during the 2013-14 campaign and began the following season with the club before going on loan to CA Osasuna prior to his move to MLS.
5. He's brushed-up on his Harry Potter knowledge
When he’s not on the soccer field, Tarek enjoys reading (he just finished the Harry Potter series), watching movies, playing video games, and listening to R&B and Egyptian music. He has two older brothers and a younger sister. Tarek’s native language is Arabic, but he also speaks English, German and a little Spanish. His favorite soccer players are Mido and Sergio Ramos.