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 Colorado Rapids

Colorado Rapids Acquire U.S. International Defender Sam Vines from Royal Antwerp FC

January 22, 2024 - Major League Soccer (MLS)
Colorado Rapids News Release


COMMERCE CITY, Colo. - The Colorado Rapids announced today that the club has signed defender Sam Vines from Royal Antwerp FC of the Belgian Pro League to a four-year contract through the 2027 season, on Jan. 22, 2024.

"We are incredibly happy to bring Sam back home to the Rapids. He is an exceptional player, who has gained valuable experience abroad in Europe, and we're thrilled to add his talents to our group" said Colorado Rapids President Pádraig Smith. "His career progression and success at both club and international levels are a testament to his quality, hard work and the investment our club has made in developing young local players and our 'Drive to Youth' philosophy."

Vines, 24, rejoins the Rapids from Royal Antwerp FC , where he spent the previous three seasons, scoring two goals and two assists in 58 appearances across all competitions for The Reds. His performances spanned various competitions, including the Jupiler Pro League, UEFA Champions League Qualifying, UEFA Europa League, Europa League Qualifying, Belgian Super Cup and Belgian National Division 1. The defender joined Antwerp on a transfer from Colorado in August 2021. During his time there, Antwerp won the Belgian First Division (2023), Belgian Cup (2023) and the Belgian Super Cup (2023).

"From our first conversation, I knew Sam would be an ideal fit for our system and style of play. His motivation level is high, he's a winner, and he loves to attack both sides of the ball. It's equally important that Sam is also a humble, team guy that fits into our club culture," said Rapids Head Coach Chris Armas.

Prior to joining Royal Antwerp FC, the Colorado Springs, Colorado, native spent four seasons with the Rapids. He featured in 53 MLS matches for the Rapids, contributing two goals and four assists, after making his debut on Oct. 21, 2018. In 2020, he was named to the MLS 22 Under 22 for a second-consecutive year and was voted Defensive Player of the Year by Centennial 38, the Rapids' organized supporters' group. He began his journey with the Rapids Academy at the age of 13, progressing through its ranks and signing a Homegrown Player contract in February 2018 at the age of 18.

At the international level, Vines has nine caps with the U.S. Men's National Team (USMNT). Most recently, Vines earned the start in the USMNT's friendly against Japan in September 2022. Prior to that, he earned a call up for the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup, where he scored his first USMNT goal in a 1-0 win over Haiti to start group play. He featured in all five matches as the USMNT won the tournament for the seventh time. He earned his first call up to the USMNT in January 2020, and later he became the first Rapids Academy product to start a match for the USMNT in a 1-0 friendly win over Costa Rica on Feb. 1, 2020.

TRANSACTION: Colorado Rapids sign defender Sam Vines from Royal Antwerp F.C. to a four-year contract through the 2027 season, on Jan. 22, 2024.

Sam Vines

Position: Defender

Height: 5-10

Weight: 150

Birthdate: May 31, 1999

Birthplace: Colorado Springs, CO

Nationality: United States


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