SAN JOSE, Calif. – The San Jose Earthquakes announced today that the club has signed Swedish-Eritrean forward Henok Goitom (hen-NOOK goy-tum) using Targeted Allocation Money, pending receipt of his P-1 Visa and ITC.
Goitom, 31, has tallied 78 goals and 31 assists in 268 games during his professional career. He has played extensively in Spain’s top division, La Liga, scoring 14 goals in 109 appearances for UD Almeria, Real Murcia, Real Valladolid and Getafe.
“Henok is a proven goal scorer that will add punch to our offense,” said Earthquakes general manager John Doyle. “We think he will be a great fit for the club both on the field and in the locker room.”
Goitom most recently played in La Liga for Getafe during the tail end of the 2015-16 season, making two appearances.
The Sweden-born striker began his professional career with Udinese of Italy’s Serie A in 2003, scoring a 90th-minute equalizer against Inter Milan in his lone league appearance on February 19, 2005. He then spent the next two years on loan with Ciudad Murcia, scoring 23 goals in 75 appearances with the Spanish second-division side.
In 2007, Goitom signed with Real Murcia of La Liga and scored a pair of goals in 33 appearances for the club that season. He subsequently spent the 2008-09 season on loan with fellow La Liga side Real Valladolid, finishing as the team’s top scorer with 10 goals and helping stave off relegation.
At the conclusion of the 2008-09 season, Goitom signed with UD Almeria, where he would remain until 2012. In his three seasons with the club, he recorded 11 goals and five assists in 86 total appearances. Goitom scored twice during the 2010-11 Copa del Rey, helping the squad reach the semifinals for the first time in its history, before falling to eventual runner-up FC Barcelona.
In August 2012, Goitom departed Almeria for AIK Solna of the top flight in Sweden. He enjoyed great success playing for his hometown club, tallying 53 goals and 24 assists in 114 matches across all competitions. He performed well in European competition, scoring eight goals in 12 Europa League and Europa League qualifying matches. Goitom was named MVP of the Swedish league in 2015 and returned to Spain in March 2016 upon signing a short-term contract with Getafe.
Internationally, Goitom was a regular for the Sweden U-21s in 2005-06 and nearly broke into the senior team for the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Last September, he requested permission from FIFA to play for the African nation of Eritrea and has scored one goal in two appearances since.
Transaction: San Jose Earthquakes (MLS) – San Jose Earthquakes sign F Henok Goitom as a Discovery Signing on Aug. 10, 2016 using Targeted Allocation Money.
Born: September 22, 1984 in Solna, Sweden
Hometown: Solna, Sweden
Last Club: Getafe CF (Spain)