By Michael Lewis
Another former Cosmos has moved on in soccer as Canadian international defender Dejan Jaković signed with the Los Angeles Football Club Tuesday.
Jaković, a center back, will join the team in California for preseason.
“Dejan is an experienced player that knows this league extremely well,” executive vice president of soccer operations and general manager John Thorrington said in a statement. “He is technically sound and has all the physical tools to contribute to what we are building here at LAFC.”
In his only season with the Cosmos, the 32-year-old Jaković played in 22 games in 2017, helping the club to the North American Soccer League final as New York lost to the San Francisco Deltas, 2-0. He scored one goal and assisted on two goals.
The 6-2 Jaković, who has made 38 appearances for the Canadian national team, having performed in the 2009, 2015 and 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cups and five World Cup qualifying matches.
He also brings to the expansion team experience in the middle of the backline — 111 matches across all competitions for D.C. He played in the 1-0 victory over Real Salt Lake in the 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup final.
“Dejan is a proven MLS veteran who will bring valuable experience to our group,” LAFC head coach Bob Bradley said. “We are delighted to have Dejan join us and we look forward to his contributions on-and-off the pitch.”
On Twitter, Jakovic thanked the Cosmos for his time with the team.
“I want to express my gratitude to the Cosmos community for making my first year back on the pitch in the U.S. special and for making me feel right at home,” he wrote.
“Thanks to the club, Gio, Mr. Rocco B. Commisso, front office and players, and most importantly, thank you to the fans. I wish you all the best moving forward.”
Jaković became the 11th Cosmos to leave the team or to make an exodus to another professional soccer team.
In December, three Cosmos players joined new clubs.
Goalkeeper Jimmy Maurer hooked up with FC Dallas (Major League Soccer) while defender David Diosa signed with the Real Monarchs (Untied Soccer League) and midfielder Irving Herrera returned to his native El Salvador to play with FAS.
Argentine forward Pablo Vranjicán joined Alianza Petrolera F.C. (Colombia) and midfielder Emmanuel Ledesma has signed with FC Cincinnati (USL).
Defender David Ochieng has joined IF Brommapojkarna of the Swedish First Division.
On Jan. 12, midfielder Javi Marquez signed with with Club Gimnàstic de Tarragona of the Spanish Segunda Division.
On Saturday, Jan. 20 the Cosmos transferred midfielder Eric Calvillo to the San Jose Earthquakes (MLS).
Right back Ryan Richter announced his retirement as a player to enter the coaching ranks Tuesday, Jan. 23.
And on Wednesday, Jan. 24, midfielder Andres Flores was reunited with his former coach on the Cosmos, Giovanni Savarese, as he signed with the Portland Timbers.
The Cosmos are in limbo for the time being as it awaits a ruling from an appellate court as the NASL seeks a preliminary injunction on the U.S. Soccer Federation rescinding its Division Two status for 2018.