Sporting Kansas City acquires Josh Gardner from Montreal Impact
Sporting Kansas City acquired defender/midfielder Josh Gardner from the Montreal Impact on Wednesday in exchange for Sporting KC’s highest pick in the second round of the 2013 MLS SuperDraft. The option on Gardner’s contract has been exercised and he has been added to the Sporting Kansas City roster. Per club policy, terms of the agreement will not be disclosed.
“We are very happy to welcome Josh to the organization and look forward to adding another quality player to compete within our roster,” Sporting Kansas City Manager Peter Vermes said.
Gardner, 30, began his MLS career in 2004 with the LA Galaxy as the 13th overall selection out of the University of Cincinnati. He led the Bearcats with six goals and six assists in 2003, earning All-Conference USA first team honors and securing the school’s second NCAA Tournament berth in program history. In three seasons, he compiled 14 goals and 15 assists in 60 games played.
His standout junior season and a strong showing with the United States Under-20 Men’s National Team under then-head coach Thomas Rongen at the U.S. Soccer Festival in 2003 saw him join Major League Soccer’s Project-40 Class of 2004.
Gardner played three seasons for the Galaxy and was a member of the 2005 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup and MLS Cup championship squad, making 21 appearances from 2004-2006. He recorded a goal and assist in his first professional start against Deportivo Saprissa in the 2006 CONCACAF Champions Cup quarterfinals.
Gardner next played for the Seattle Sounders, helping the team win the USL-1 Championship and the Commissioner’s Cup in 2007. In two seasons with Seattle, he made 52 appearances with seven goals and four assists.
The Texas-native would move to the Carolina RailHawks for the 2009 and 2010 seasons, contributing eight goals and nine assists. He was named Team MVP in 2010 when he helped the club reach the USSF D-2 championship.
Gardner returned to MLS in 2011 to play for the Columbus Crew, where he notched two goals and two assists in 23 matches (including postseason). At the conclusion of the 2011 season, the Montreal Impact selected Gardner in the MLS Expansion Draft and he made six appearances for the club in 2012. He also recorded four assists in six starts in the 2012 MLS Reserve League.
“I’m very excited to come to Kansas City. Sporting KC is an organization where the ownership group and coaching staff have done great things,” Gardner said. “They have accomplished a lot and I look forward to playing in the best stadium and in front of all the passionate fans.”
Sporting Kansas City currently holds the 14th overall and 33rd overall selections in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft.
Birthplace: Brazosport, Texas
Hometown: Houston, Texas
Last Club: Montreal Impact (MLS)
Transaction: Sporting Kansas City acquires defender/midfielder Josh Gardner from the Montreal Impact in exchange for the club's highest second round pick in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft.