Monday, June 29, 2009

Player Signed: Edgaras Jankauskas

According to a Kyle McCarthy (, Boston Herald, The Revs have agreed to a contract with 34 year old Lithuanian striker, Edgaras Jankauskas. He now awaits visa and ITC approval before he can join the team. Terms of the deal have yet to be announced. Also, it is unclear how they will free up a Senior International slot on their roster. It was announced last week that Twellman would hit the DL for about two months, but the vacancy left by that move would still leave the roster without an open SI slot. So, we expect more moves or announcements regarding the roster to come soon.

Jankauskas is a towering figure, and a powerful striker (coming in at 6'4"). He began his career by playing for his hometown club FK Zalgiris, of Vilnius, Lithuania. He quickly made a name for himself in his native country, by scoring 41 goals in 93 matches, all by the age of 21. Edgaras then spent the next few years hoping around clubs in Russia (Torpedo, CSKA Moscow), Belgium (FC Bruges), and Spain (Real Sociadad). After his first season in Spain, he was loaned out to Portuguese club Benfica. He only spent one season on loan to Benfica, but it was enough to then Porto Manager, Jose Morinho, to notice him, and sign him from Sociadad.

During his time with Porto, under Morinho, Jankauskas saw a mixed bag of success. He was a part of domestic cup winnings sides, and even the 2004 UEFA Champions League winners. However, during the 2003 season, Edgaras was left out of the final for UEFA Cup winning team.

Jankauskas then spent the next few seasons trying to get into regular team play in various other clubs (OGC Nice, Hearts, Kaunas, Belenenses. to name a few) before trialing with the Revs earlier this month.

Jankauskas is known for his power, and with a clear lack of striker options, he may be just what the Revs need to sustain possession, and threaten on attack. Without Twellman in the lineup, the team lacks a player who can hold the ball up in possession, and power his way through the box. The move will allow Nicol to move Joseph and/or Ralston back where they belong, in the midfield.

Admitedly, I have only seen Jankauskas play in 1 or 2 matches, and a few youtube clips, but this signing brings more hope to me than excpectation. The Revs have had a definitive problem at striker over the last two seasons. As a supporter of the club, I hope EJ works out, and can help be one of, if not the missing piece the Revs need right now. The Revs have had trouble finding quality SI strikers in the past (Abundus, Sunsing, Diallo, Fernandez etc...). Let's hope that changes with Edgaras, and he can help bring us back to the top of the table, and bring home our first MLS Cup!


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