Seattle Sounders acquire Brazilian Heber from New York City FC


Seattle Sounders FC acquired veteran Brazilian forward Heber from New York City FC on Thursday for at least $400,000 in general allocation money.

NYCFC can receive an additional $150,000 in GAM if certain performance metrics are met. Heber is under contract for 2023 with a club option for 2024.

Heber, 31, has registered 24 goals and six assists in 70 appearances (38 starts) over the past four seasons for NYCFC.

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“I would like to welcome Heber to Seattle and look forward to seeing him at preseason camp,” Sounders coach Brian Schmetzer said in the press release. “You always need players who can score, and Heber has been dangerous for goals throughout his career. I can’t wait for him to get to work with our coaches and his new teammates to add another strong element to our attacking group.”

Heber spent over nine seasons in foreign leagues before joining NYCFC on a permanent transfer from Croatian club NK Rijeka in March 2019. He was an immediate force, scoring 15 regular season goals in his debut MLS campaign.

Heber has played just 12 games in 2020 as he tore the ACL in his right knee in a game against Toronto FC on September 23, 2020. The recovery and rehabilitation process limited him to seven games from regular season in 2021.

NYCFC won the 2021 MLS Cup, but Heber only saw action in one of four postseason games. He did not play in the title game against the Portland Timbers.

Last season, he scored eight goals in 29 appearances (nine starts) before NYCFC were knocked out of the playoffs by the Philadelphia Union in the semi-finals.

Heber said he was sad to be leaving NYCFC but eager for a new opportunity.

« I love this club and this city, since I arrived in 2019 I feel completely at home, » Heber said via NYCFC. “Despite the ups and downs, I really enjoyed my time here for what we were able to accomplish as a team. Being able to win trophies for New York and its amazing fans is something I will always cherish.

“I would like to thank my teammates, the medical team and everyone at the Club for all the support you gave me as I returned from injury. I couldn’t have done it without you and I now feel fitter and stronger than ever I’m excited for the new challenge in Seattle and I’m very happy to stay in MLS, a league I love now. I will always remember my time in New York fondly and it will always hold a very special place in my heart. .”

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