Defender Giancarlo Gonzalez has left MLS to sign with Serie A club Palermo, the Italian team announced Tuesday.
Palermo signed Gonzalez to a three-year deal. The financial terms of the deal were not announced, but reports say the transfer fee is $5 million, which is the largest amount MLS has ever received for a defender.
The 26-year-old was only with Columbus for seven months.
"Believe me, this is something that you don't pass up, bar none," Columbus Crew head coach and sporting director Gregg Berhalter said Saturday. "When this type of offer comes around, you take it. I think that, for us, it's a game-changer in terms of what we're able to do now with the structure of the club and what we're able to do with prospective players."
Gonzalez played for Costa Rica in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The team won Group D, but lost to the Netherlands on penalties in the quarterfinal round.
- Sarah Barshop