COLUMBUS, Ohio -- The Columbus Crew announced today that the club has acquired Generation adidas defender Tim Ward from the MetroStars in exchange for midfielder Chris Henderson. As a Generation adidas player, the 18-year-old Ward will not count toward The Crew's senior roster or salary cap.
Ward appeared in 13 games for the MetroStars last year, his first as a professional. He started 11 of those 13 games and notched three assists.
"I'm excited to be coming to Columbus," said Ward. "I don't really have any connections to Columbus but I played for Sigi with the U-20s and I am happy to be playing for him again. I just want to come in and work my way into a starting position and help the team be successful and win a championship."
The Wisconsin native is a product of the U.S. Soccer residency program in Bradenton, Fla. and has been a regular with the U.S. Under-20 national team and the U.S. U-17 team. Ward attended Saint Louis University as a freshman in 2004 and was a second-team all-conference selection, before leaving college to turn pro.
"We are very excited about the addition of Tim Ward," said Crew head coach Sigi Schmid. "He is a very good young player with a bright future ahead of him and he can play a number of different positions. Chris was a very valuable member of The Crew but circumstances warranted us making a change."
Henderson, an MLS original, turned 35 in December. He tallied three goals and eight assists in 2005, playing 21 games with Columbus and eight with Colorado.
"I just want to thank everyone at The Crew," said Henderson. "The organization and coaching staff is first class. I felt welcome from very the beginning and every MLS club should be run as well as The Crew. Going to the MetroStars is just a better situation for me and my family at this time."
"It is tough losing the leadership and contribution of a player the caliber of Chris," said Crew general manager Mark McCullers. "But this move was in his best interest as well as The Crew organization. We acquire a young up and coming player as well as pick up a considerable amount of salary cap space to continue the process of building our team."