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Wizards Acquire Diego Walsh from Columbus Crew

January 15, 2004 - Major League Soccer (MLS) - Sporting Kansas City News Release

KANSAS CITY, MO (Thursday, January 15, 2004) - Kansas City Wizards General Manager Curt Johnson announced today that the team has acquired midfielder Diego Walsh from the Columbus Crew in exchange for a conditional draft pick in the 2005 MLS SuperDraft. A native of Santos, Brazil, Walsh was a first round draft pick last season for Columbus and can play both centrally in the midfield as well as play forward.

"Diego is a very talented, attacking player. He was a first round choice last year, but things didn't quite work out in Columbus because they have a guy there that plays pretty similar. We feel he is a very promising young player and he will be given every opportunity to get into the lineup and play. We are looking forward to integrating him into our team in Kansas City."

Walsh, 24, was the 7th overall pick by the Columbus Crew in the 2003 MLS SuperDraft that took place in Kansas City. He appeared in 14 contests, including six starts, and scored one goal. He made his MLS debut on April 26, 2003 against the MetroStars and scored his first and only goal as a professional on June 28, 2003 against D.C. United. A transitional international player last season, he will be classified as a Senior International player this year based on his age and will fill a Senior International spot.

"I'm really excited. I think the Kansas City Wizards are a great organization and I think this will be a great opportunity for me to really blossom and have a great year at the MLS level. I'm really looking forward to this season. I spoke with Bob Gansler and I think he really believes in what I am capable of doing and I'm really looking forward to stepping in and hopefully playing a lot with the Wizards."

Walsh attended Southern Methodist University where he starred for the Mustangs as a two-time All-American and was a finalist for the 2002 M.A.C. Hermann Trophy. Walsh is the Mustang's all-time assists leader with 39 and ranks fifth all-time in goals scored (39) and fourth in total points (117). He was named the Missouri Valley Conference Player of the year in 2002 and 2000.

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