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PLAYER PROFILE: Akeem Ward #30




Akeem O'Connor-Ward
Personal information
Full name Akeem O'Connor-Ward
Date of birth (1996-01-05) January 5, 1996 (age 26)
Place of birth Vienna, Virginia, United States
Height 5 ft 7 in (170 cm)
Position(s) Defender
Club information
Current team
Rio Grande Valley FC
(on loan from Oakland Roots)
Number 31
College career
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2015 Hastings Broncos 20 (2)
2016–2018 Creighton Bluejays 47 (2)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2016–2017 Lane United 23 (0)
2018 Chicago FC United 7 (0)
2019 D.C. United 1 (0)
2019Loudoun United (loan) 9 (0)
2019 Birmingham Legion 13 (0)
2020 North Carolina FC 11 (1)
2021– Oakland Roots 32 (1)
2022–Rio Grande Valley FC (loan) 0 (0)
*Club domestic league appearances and goals, correct as of July 15, 2022

Akeem O'Connor-Ward (born January 6, 1996) is an American soccer player who plays as a defender for USL Championship club Rio Grande Valley FC on loan from Oakland Roots.[1]

Career

Ward was selected 14th overall by D.C. United in the 2019 MLS SuperDraft, and he signed a professional contract with the club on January 31, 2019. “We had him rated as the best right back in the draft,” said United GM Dave Kasper. “We liked everything about him."[2][3]

He was loaned out to D.C.'s USL affiliate Loudoun United in March 2019.[4] He made his USL Championship debut on March 9, 2019, as he played all ninety minutes in a 2–0 away defeat to Nashville SC.[5] He was waived by DC United on July 24, 2019.[6]

Ward joined USL Championship side Birmingham Legion FC on July 30, 2019.[7]

In February 2020, Ward signed with North Carolina FC.[8] He scored the first goal of his professional career on August 8, 2020, the lone tally in a 1–0 NCFC win over Memphis 901 FC.[9] He was later suspended for two games by the USL Championship for kicking Charlotte Independence player Clay Dimick in the neck during a game on August 26, 2020.[10] Ward apologized in a tweet, saying he "lashed out" without intending to hit Dimick.[11]

On January 13, 2021, Ward signed with Oakland Roots ahead of their inaugural USL Championship season.[12] On July 8, 2022, Ward was loaned to USL Championship side Rio Grande Valley FC for the remainder of the season.[13]

References

  1. ^ Akeem Ward at Soccerway. Retrieved March 11, 2019.
  2. ^ "MLS Draft 2019: D.C. United select Creighton defender Akeem Ward". blackandredunited.com. January 11, 2019. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  3. ^ "D.C. United signs 2019 SuperDraft pick Akeem Ward". blackandredunited.com. January 31, 2019. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  4. ^ "Loudoun United signs 1, receives 3 on loan from D.C. United for opener". blackandredunited.com. March 7, 2019. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  5. ^ "Nashville vs. Loudoun United – 9 March 2019 – Soccerway". int.soccerway.com. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
  6. ^ "DC United sign attacker Gordon Wild, waive defender Akeem Ward | MLSsoccer.com".
  7. ^ Team, Legion FC Communications (July 30, 2019). "Legion FC Signs Defender Akeem Ward". Birmingham Legion FC.
  8. ^ "NORTH CAROLINA FC STRENGTHENS DEFENSE WITH ADDITION OF AKEEM WARD". NorthCarolinaFC.com. February 18, 2020. Retrieved February 18, 2020.
  9. ^ "North Carolina FC gets second win of the season after defeating Memphis 901 FC". WRAL Sports Fan. WRAL. August 8, 2020. Retrieved August 9, 2020.
  10. ^ @USLChampionship (August 28, 2020). "IDP decision on Akeem Ward review:" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  11. ^ Leiker, Emily (August 28, 2020). "Game on: North Carolina FC prepares for Saturday's home match with Memphis 901 FC". The News & Observer. Retrieved September 3, 2020.(registration required)
  12. ^ "Roots Sign Former MLS SuperDraft Pick Akeem Ward". January 13, 2021.
  13. ^ "Toros acquire O'Connor-Ward on loan from Oakland". July 8, 2022.

External links


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