Metro hopes that Dante leads to Paradiso
February 3, 2023 (Official Press Release)
The New York Red Bulls have acquired Belgian forward Dante Vanzeir from Royal Union Saint-Gilloise for an undisclosed transfer fee. Vanzeir joins the Red Bulls as a Designated Player, pending receipt of his P-1 visa and ITC, on a four-year MLS contract with an option for 2027, the club announced today.
"We are very excited to add Dante [Vanzeir] to our club," said Head of Sport Jochen Schneider. "He is a top-class professional and is highly motivated to show his skills here in the United States, we are excited to see him on the pitch at Red Bull Arena soon."
Vanzeir, 24, joins New York from Royale Union Saint-Gilloise, where he has spent the last three seasons. The Belgian forward made 92 appearances with the club, while scoring 48 goals and tallying 21 assists. In his first season with the club, Vanzeir scored 18 goals and won the Golden Boot in the Challenger Pro League, the second division in Belgian soccer. He led Royal Union Saint-Gilloise to win the league and earn promotion to the Juplier Pro League for the first time in 48 years. This season with the club, he has made 28 appearances across all competitions and has added 12 goals and two assists.
"Dante [Vanzeir] is a great human being and has goal scoring ability, we are happy to have him in New York," Head Coach Gerhard Struber said. "He is a very talented player, and he will help us accomplish our goals for the 2023 season."
The Beringen, Belgium native has spent time during his career with Beerschot V.A., KV Mechelen, and KCR Genk. While with Beerschot V.A. for the 2018-2019 season, Vanzeir made 27 appearances in the Challenger Pro League and scored 13 goals in 2,2028 minutes played. He joined Genk's youth system when he was eleven years old and joined the first team in 2016, where he made his professional debut against R.S.C. Anderlecht on September 18 of that year. Vanzeir won the Belgian Super Cup with Genk for the 2019-2020 season.
Vanzeir has represented Belgium at the all-youth levels from the U-15's to U-21's. He made 37 appearances as a Belgian youth international and scored eight goals. In November 2021, Vanzeir was named to Belgian's senior team for 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualification matches against Estonia and Wales. He earned his first cap and senior national team debut on November 16 against Wales coming on as a substitute and playing 31 minutes. Former New York Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry was an assistant coach for Belgium when Vanzeir played for the senior team.