COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — The Columbus Crew officially introduced forward Juan Camilo “Cucho” Hernandez in a press conference Friday.
The 23-year-old Colombian comes to Columbus from English Premier League club Watford for a record transfer fee of just over $10 million in a designated player deal. The transfer fee makes Hernandez the most expensive player in Crew history and the 7th most expensive signing in MLS history.
You can watch his full press conference in the video player above.
Hernandez’s transaction fee surpasses that of Crew midfielder Lucas Zelarayan who was acquired by Columbus in January 2020 for a $7 million.
Hernandez scored five goals in the English Premier League last season for Watford and will be the Crew’s new starting striker. The former starting No. 9 Gyasi Zardes was traded to the Colorado Rapids earlier this season.
The Pereira-born forward made his professional debut with Deportivo Pereira of Colombia’s Second Division in 2015, making 20 appearances and scoring three goals in his first season.
In 2016, his second season with Deportivo Pereira, Hernandez scored 20 goals and provided four assists to finish as the leading scorer of Colombia’s Second Division. Following his outstanding 2016 performance, Hernandez signed with America de Cali of the Colombian topflight.
After spending the first half of 2017 with America de Cali, Hernandez played for Spanish Second Division side S.D. Huesca from 2017-2019. In his first season in Spain, the forward helped Huesca earn promotion to LaLiga, Spain’s First Division.
In all, Hernandez played for Huesca from 2017-2019, making 70 appearances while registering 20 goals and nine assists. The Colombian striker then joined LaLiga side RCD Mallorca for the 2019-2020 season, making 24 appearances while tallying five goals and one assist.