SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes announced today that the club has acquired midfielder Mehdi Ballouchy from the New York Red Bulls in exchange for a 2013 international spot and a conditional 2013 draft pick.
The seven-year MLS veteran has 13 goals and 24 assists in 174 career games with three different clubs. Most recently, Ballouchy scored four goals and notched four assists in 51 appearances with the New York Red Bulls.
“I’ve admired his play over the seven years he’s been in the league,” said Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop. “He’s steadily improved since joining MLS. Mehdi’s a good player, a great addition to our team and we’re looking forward to having him here in San Jose.”
Up to Monday’s trade, Ballouchy’s 2012 campaign included one goal and two assists to go along with 10 starts and 16 appearances for the Red Bulls. In 2011, he had two goals and one assist while starting 17 of his 29 matches played and, in 2010, the Moroccan had four goals and six assists while starting 25 of his 27 games played for the Colorado Rapids and New York Red Bulls. Ballouchy joined New York on Sept. 14, 2010 after a trade with Colorado and started six games with the Red Bulls to close out the season, helping secure the club’s second regular season Eastern Conference title.
“Mehdi has been a good MLS player for a long time and we’re excited to add more depth to the team,” said Earthquakes general manager John Doyle.
The former Generation adidas winger was selected No. 2 overall in the 2006 MLS SuperDraft by Real Salt Lake. He had two goals and two assists in 46 appearances for RSL before joining Colorado in exchange for Kyle Beckerman on July 16, 2007. While in the Mile High City, Ballouchy was one of the Rapids’ leading assist men with 18 in 77 appearances.
Ballouchy was born in Morocco, but moved to the United States with his brother as a teenager. He spent his junior year playing for South High School in Denver before moving again to the Bay Area, suiting up his senior year for Gunn High School in Palo Alto, Calif. Ballouchy was a member of the Morocco U-16 and U-17 national teams after working through the Raja Casablanca youth system.
As a collegian, Ballouchy spent one season at Creighton before transferring to Santa Clara. He was named a Soccer America and NSCAA/adidas First Team All-American in 2005 while leading the Broncos to a spot in the NCAA Tournament under coach Cam Rast.
Weight: 169 lbs.
Born: April 6, 1983, in Casablanca, Morocco
Hometown: Casablanca, Morocco
Last College: Santa Clara