The Philadelphia Union announced today that the club has signed 30-year-old Brazilian midfielder Ilsinho on a two-year deal using Targeted Allocation Money. Ilsinho will occupy an international roster spot upon receipt of a P-1 Visa and international transfer certificate (ITC).
“We’re extremely excited to land a player of Ilsinho’s caliber and that he chose Philadelphia over other options,” Philadelphia Union Sporting Director Earnie Stewart said. “For a player with experience at the highest level in this sport, he came into our preseason camp with a tremendous work rate and that speaks to the type of person he is and who we want at our club. His elite-level attacking ability speaks for itself and we’re confident he’ll have an immediate impact.”
Ilsinho joins the Union after his second three-year spell with Shakhtar Donetsk (2012-2015). During his six total seasons with the club, Ilsinho appeared in 175 games and scored 22 goals with 19 assists and helped Shakhtar Donetsk win the league title five times – in 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014. He also helped the team win the Ukrainian Cup in 2008, 2012 and 2013 and the Ukrainian Super Cup in 2008, 2012 and 2014.
While at Shakhtar Donetsk, Ilsinho made 19 appearances in UEFA Champions League, most recently in 2014-15, where he helped the club finish second in Group H to advance to the knockout round where they ultimately lost to eventual semifinalists Bayern Munich. He also led Shakhtar Donetsk out of group play in 2012-13.
Ilsinho also helped the club win their first ever UEFA Cup, in 2009, making them the first team from Ukraine to win the competition. Ilsinho scored the game-winning goal against Dynamo Kiev (3-2 agg.) to secure Shaktar’s place in the final against SV Werder Bremen where they won 2-1.
Ilsinho has also received call-ups from the Brazilian national team and made his debut on March 27, 2007 in a friendly against Ghana. Ilsinho also joined the Brazilian squad for the 2008 Summer Olympics in which he helped the team earned a Bronze medal, coming on as a substitute in Brazil’s 5-0 victory over New Zealand and later starting in the 3-0 win against China.
The Philadelphia Union open the season March 6 at FC Dallas with kick-off scheduled for 3 p.m. The team will host New England Revolution two weeks later for the home opener at Talen Energy Stadium with kick scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Single game and group tickets are available now by visiting philadelphiaunion.com/tickets or calling 1-877-21-UNION.
Date of Birth: Oct. 12, 1985
Place of Birth: São Bernardo do Campo, Brazil
Last Club: Shakhtar Donetsk
Transaction: Joined the Philadelphia Union as a Discovery Signing using Targeted Allocation Money on Feb. 24, 2016.