Columbus Crew SC Signs Pedro Santos from SC Braga

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FARO, PORTUGAL - JANUARY 25: SC Braga's Portuguese forward Pedro Santos with Vitoria de Setubal's forward Nuno Santos in action during Portuguese League Cup Semi Final match between Vitoria Setubal and SC Braga at Estadio Algarve on January 25, 2017 in Faro, Portugal. (Photo by Gualter Fatia/Getty Images)

Columbus, OH — The first summer signing for Columbus Crew SC goes to SC Braga winger Pedro Santos. To get Crew SC fans excited, they posted a teaser video on Monday.

Estimated at a $2.4 million deal, the Portuguese midfielder is headed to Columbus after passing all medical exams. Although Santos is primarily a winger, he’s known to play other positions such as left wing and striker.

Columbus Crew SC Signs Pedro Santos from SC Braga

When Santos arrived at Braga, he was a struggle to see the field with the first team. Santos was then loaned out to FC Astra Giurgiu in Romania in 2013 and Rio Ave F.C. of Portugal in 2014.

During his time with Braga, Santos recorded 24 goals in 114 appearances for the club. Somewhere amongst those 100+ appearances is UEFA Europa League experience. Needless to say, Crew SC snagged a good one.

It’s a good time for Santos to join Crew SC as they fight to stay above the playoff line. Not only that but midfielder Federico Higuain has indicated that this season will be his last with the Black and Gold. 

Santos could possibly be the replacement Crew SC need since they’re losing a well-known face. A move that could shake up the season could pay off after all.

Characteristics of Santos. Will it help or hurt Crew SC?

The 5-foot-8 Portuguese International has many good characteristics that will definitely change the game and style for Crew SC. But, will it help or hurt them in the long run?

Columbus has a unique style of play in playing from the back; Like most German clubs, it’s their identity and defines who they are as a club. Will Santos fit into Head Coach and Sporting Director Gregg Berhalter‘s system?

His characteristics include cutting inside, crossing, playing the ball on the ground, long balls, and often gets fouled. Well, all the better for a winger.

His strengths include crossing, holding the ball, making key passes, and set-piece ability. Meanwhile, his weakness is discipline. What player’s weakness isn’t discipline?

But wait, what about Kekuta Manneh?

Well, this brings up a problem. As stated before, Santos plays a winger position. Crew SC is loaded on wingers with Justin Meram, Ethan Finlay, Kekuta Manneh, Hector Jimenez,  Cristian Martinez. Do you get the picture? Good.

Well officially, Manneh is listed as a forward, but he’s starting to become a permanent fixture in the match day Starting XI. So, will Berhalter move Manneh from the wing, and put him up top with lone striker Ola Kamara, or is this just a temporary place for Manneh to settle until he’s shipped out?

He voiced his displeasure with his playing time once he arrived in Columbus. If Santos becomes a regular starter, it’s more than likely we will see Manneh either on the bench or not on the 18-man roster at all. It all depends on how Berhalter eases Santos into his plans.

Columbus takes the field again at MAPFRE Stadium this Saturday against rivals Chicago Fire (7:30 pm EST | MLS Live) in their final meeting of the regular season.

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