Toronto FC has signed Jamaican international defender Kemar Lawrence from RSC Anderlecht of the Jupiler Pro League (First division, Belgium) through 2024, the club announced today. He will be added to the club’s roster pending receipt of his International Transfer Certificate (ITC).
“We are very excited about Kemar joining the club,” said Toronto FC General Manager Ali Curtis. “He’s a fearless competitor, he has experience, and he immediately makes our team better. Kemar is a lockdown wingback, and we are excited to get him going. Looking forward to he and his family planting roots in Orlando, and then Toronto. Very excited for Kemar to join is an understatement.”
Lawrence, 28, joins Toronto FC after spending the past two seasons with Anderlecht. This move will mark a return to Major League Soccer for Lawrence, who spent five seasons with the New York Red Bulls, where he made 146 appearances, scoring five goals and adding 12 assists in all competitions (MLS, Playoffs, Concacaf Champions League and U.S. Open Cup). He originally signed with the Red Bulls on March 16, 2015, and made his MLS debut a week later, when he started in a 2-0 win over D.C. United on March 22, 2015. In his first season with the Red Bulls, he was a part of the team that won the 2015 Supporters’ Shield. Under TFC’s current head coach Chris Armas, he won the Supporters’ Shield in 2018, and was named to the MLS Best XI the same year. In 2019, he helped the Red Bulls’ backline secure nine clean sheets during the regular season.
“I believe that we are a really good fit for Kemar and that he complements our roster well,” said head coach Chris Armas. “He adds experience, intensity and a defensive presence that is fierce. I am excited to start working with him again.”
Prior to joining MLS, Lawrence signed with Harbor View F.C. of the Red Stripe Premier League in 2007, where he made 50 appearances over four seasons. In 2013, he won the Jamaican National Premier League. He began his youth career with Rae Town F.C. in the Jamaican second division.
Internationally, Lawrence has earned 60 caps and recorded three goals and six assists for the Jamaican National Team. He got his first call into the senior national team in September 2013 for a Concacaf qualifier match against Panama but earned his first cap in November of the same year in a friendly match against Trinidad & Tobago. He was a part of the teams that earned second place in the 2015 and 2017 Concacaf Gold Cup.
TRANSACTION: Toronto FC signed defender Kemar Lawrence through 2024.
Weight: 161 lbs.
Birthdate: September 17, 1992 (Age – 28)
Birthplace: Kingston, Jamaica
Previous Club: RSC Anderlecht