It may not be a case of cause and effect, but two days after the New England Revolution suffered a 4-0 defeat to the last-placed team in the league, they announced the signing of Costa Rican defender Gabriel Badilla.
The deal to bring the Saprissa regular to Gillette Stadium has been in the works for weeks, but was only completed over the weekend. He will be available upon approval of his visa.
The 24-year-old Badilla has spent his entire professional career with the Monstruo Morado, the most important club in Costa Rica. Buttressed by Badilla's defensive abilities, Saprissa has won the last four championships, taken the CONCACAF Champions Cup in 2005, and finished third at the '05 FIFA Club World Cup.
Badilla has also been capped 12 times by his country, and appeared for the Ticos at the '06 World Cup in Germany. He has already been called in for Costa Rica's 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying match against El Salvador this Wednesday.
"We're pleased we are finally able to bring Gabriel to the Revolution," Revolution Vice President of Player Personnel Michael Burns said in a statement released by the club. "He is a strong, versatile defender who has gained tremendous club and international experience at a young age. With so many extra games on our schedule this season, Gabriel will give us added defensive depth as we prepare for a busy fall."
The Revolution are currently in second place in the Eastern Conference, one point behind leaders Columbus. They take on Toronto this weekend and then travel to Trinidad to face Joe Public in the first leg of a CONCACAF Champions League qualifying series.
The acquisition of Badilla has implications beyond the '08 season, suggesting that the club does not expect center back Michael Parkhurst to return next year. The U.S. international's contract is up at the end of this year, and he has not signed an extension. It is thought he could move to Europe in January on a free transfer.