CHESTER, Pa. (August 17, 2021) – Philadelphia Union announced today that the club has signed defender Olivier Mbaizo to a new, multi-year contract extension. The Cameroonian National Team player joined the club in 2018 and has moved into the starting right back role for the Union this season.
“When we signed Olivier, we knew he had the tools to become a top defender in this league and he has emerged as such,” said Union Sporting Director Ernst Tanner. “Our system requires fullbacks to contribute in the attack, defense, and transition and Olivier’s quickness and competitiveness make him a perfect fit for such a role. His continued growth and dedication made this a well-earned contract extension.”
Mbaizo, 24, signed with the Union in 2018 where he spent his first couple of seasons developing with the Union’s USL team, the then named Bethlehem Steel. During his time with the Steel, he contributed four assists in 31 matches, and helped lead the team to its first post-season win in 2018. In 2019, Mbaizo played in three matches for the Union and registered his first MLS assist on March 2 in a 2-0 win over Cincinnati. Mbaizo began earning more time and starts in 2020, where he played in 14 matches, starting 12 of those. With Mbaizo on the field, the team won eight matches, tied four and lost only twice on their way to winning the 2020 Supporters’ Shield.
Thus far this season, Mbaizo has played in all 19 matches for the Union, starting all but once. He recorded his first assist of the season on July 8 when the team played their rival New York Red Bulls. His assist led to the equalizing goal while the Union played a man down and earned him a spot on MLS’ Team of the Week for the first time in his career.
Internationally, Mbaizo has earned three senior team call ups for Cameroon. His latest was in March 2021, as they headed into their final two games of the qualification group stage of Africa Cup of Nations 2021. He has earned four senior international caps for the Indomitable Lions, his first when he made his debut as a substitute in a friendly vs. Gabon on September 6, 2016.
Prior to playing for the Union, Mbaizo played for Union Douala and Cameroonian club, Rainbow FC, where he logged four assists in 10 appearances.
TRANSACTION: Philadelphia Union sign defender Olivier Mbaizo to a contract extension on August 17, 2021.