After weeks of speculation, Andrea Pirlo has officially signed with New York City F.C., one of MLS’s most recent expansion teams. Pirlo will head to New York and become the third designated player on the roster, alongside David Villa and Frank Lampard — making NYCFC’s roster one of the most successful trio to ever play in the United States.
In his first official interview with NYCFC, Pirlo stated, “I had several opportunities to play outside of Italy, but I never had a doubt in picking New York for the enthusiasm of the people that come watch the team.”
While the transfer is a surprise to some, as Pirlo’s fitness has not faltered despite his older age, and many thought he had more years of playing in Europe ahead of him. That being said, he has a chance to make an immediate impact within the Eastern Conference in MLS as NYCFC is trying to make it into the playoffs.
Currently sitting in 7th place with 20 points, someone like Pirlo in midfield sending balls up to Villa and Lampard could turn into a golden ticket for New York. Not only can Pirlo help the team in scoring goals but also closing the gap in the team’s goal difference, which is currently -3.
NYCFC has not announced when he will be joining the team, but did state that he’s waiting to obtain his P1 visa and ITC, which is the visa obtained by athletes looking to come to the United States and play for a team.