COLUMBUS – Columbus Crew SC today announced that it has re-signed midfielder Ricardo Clark. Clark, 35, joined the Black & Gold ahead of the 2018 season as a free agent and returns in 2019 for what will be his 15th season in Major League Soccer.
In his first season in Columbus in 2018, Clark recorded 13 appearances (eight starts) and recorded one goal and one assist. In his first start with Crew SC, Clark’s 40th-minute tally on March 24 against D.C. United at MAPFRE Stadium proved to be the game-winner. Later in this season, his appearance in Crew SC’s victory on September 22 against Colorado was his 350th game played in MLS. Clark, a two-time MLS Cup winner with Houston (2006, 2007) and a two-time MLS All-Star brings 16 years of professional experience to the 2019 roster. He has recorded 36 goals and 28 assists in more than 28,000 minutes in MLS.
“We are pleased to welcome back Ricardo to Columbus Crew SC in 2019,” said Crew SC President Tim Bezbatchenko. “Ricardo’s vast experience in MLS and with the U.S. Men’s National Team continues to be valuable to the Club. Ricardo’s work rate on and off the field not only helps achieve results but also sets an example for players of all ages on the roster and we look forward to his contributions in his 15th season in this League.”
Clark was drafted by the New York MetroStars with the second overall pick in the 2003 MLS SuperDraft. The midfielder went on to make 54 regular-season appearances (44 starts) for the MetroStars from 2003-2004, scoring four goals and providing two assists. Clark then joined the San Jose Earthquakes in 2005, where he went on to make 30 regular-season appearances (28 starts) that year. From 2006-2009, Clark made 97 regular-season appearances (96 starts) during his first stint with the Houston Dynamo, playing a big role in the Dynamo’s back-to-back MLS Cup titles in 2006 and 2007. He was also named to the MLS All-Star roster in 2006 and 2007 while earning an MLS Best XI nod in 2006.
The Atlanta native signed with Eintracht Frankfurt of Germany’s First Division in 2009, where he went on to make 16 appearances (13 starts) between 2009 and 2012. Clark spent the first part of the 2012 season on loan with Stabaek of Norway’s top flight, where he made 17 appearances (all starts) and scored one goal. The midfielder returned to the Houston Dynamo in 2012, helping the club reach the MLS Cup that year. Clark made 156 regular-season appearances (146 starts) during his second stint with Houston, registering 21 goals and 15 assists while being named the Houston Dynamo Players’ Player of the Year in 2013 and 2015. He was also voted the club’s Most Valuable Player in 2015, following a season in which he scored a career-high eight goals.
At the international level, Clark has earned 33 caps and won the 2007 CONCACAF Gold Cup with the U.S. Men’s National Team. The midfielder made his debut for the U.S. as a substitute in a World Cup Qualifier against Panama on October 12, 2005. Clark has also participated in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup and the 2007 Copa America.
TRANSACTION: Columbus Crew SC re-signs midfielder Ricardo Clark on January 17, 2019.
Name: Ricardo Clark
Born: February 10, 1983 in Atlanta, Georgia
Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia
Citizenship: United States
Acquired: Originally signed as a free agent by Crew SC on February 2, 2018; re-signed by Crew SC on January 17, 2019.
Previous Experience: Houston Dynamo (2012-2017), Stabaek (2012), Eintracht Frankfurt (2009-2012), Houston Dynamo (2006-2009), San Jose Earthquakes (2005), New York MetroStars (2003-2004)