Toronto Signs Darren O’Dea

Reds acquired Ireland international defender on Friday.

Toronto FC announced Friday that the club has signed Irish international defender Darren O’Dea. As per team and league policies terms of the deal were not disclosed. O’Dea will be added to Toronto’s roster and eligible for selection upon receipt of his International Transfer Certificate.

“Darren addresses our need for an experienced, no nonsense central defender,” said Toronto FC Head Coach and Director of Soccer Operations Paul Mariner. “Darren has great leadership abilities and his experience, both for club and country, will be a welcomed addition to our club and for our young players. We are so pleased to bring him to Toronto.”

O’Dea, 25, began his youth career with Glasgow Celtic F.C. (Celtic). He made his first team debut for Celtic in September 2006 and went on to make 49 appearances during his time with the Scottish club. At Celtic, O’Dea won the Scottish Premier League twice (’06-’07 and ’07-’08) along with the Scottish Cup in 2008 and the Scottish League Cup in 2009. During his six seasons at Celtic, O’Dea went on three different loan spells with English clubs: Reading (’09), Ipswich Town (’10-’11), and Leeds United (’11-’12).

O’Dea has earned 14 caps for the Irish National Team, and was most recently included in Ireland’s UEFA EURO 2012 squad. He earned his first cap for Ireland coming on as a substitute during a friendly against South Africa in September 2009. O’Dea was recently given the 2012 Ireland Young International Player of the Year award during the FAI International Football Awards in February.

Darren O’Dea #48

Position: Defender

Height: 6’1

Weight: 180

Birthdate: February 4, 1987

Birthplace: Dublin, Ireland

Hometown: Dublin, Ireland

Nationality: Irish Last Club:

Leeds United (On loan from Glasgow Celtic F.C.)

How Acquired: Signed with Toronto FC on Friday, August 3, 2012

Pronunciation: “O’Day”