It is official: Andy Driver signs with Houston Dynamo

Jeff J Mitchell

The Houston Dynamo announced today rumored Scottish Premier League target, Andy Driver, has officially inked a deal and is set to join the team soon.

The Houston Dynamo have announced the official signing of Andy Driver. Most recently, Driver played for Hearts of the Scottish Premier League as a midfielder. Comments from team personnel have indicated they are excited by the signing and expect him to be much needed depth for the league and additional extracurricular matches ahead for the team this season.

Initially, this move is slated as a loan, but Driver's contract with Hearts ends in June and the Dynamo have already stepped in to sign him to a long-term deal as outlined in the official press release below:

HOUSTON, TX (Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013) -- The Houston Dynamo have acquired English midfielder Andrew Driver on loan from Scottish Premier League club Heart of Midlothian F.C., it was announced today. The signing is pending the receipt of Driver’s P-1 visa and International Transfer Certificate.

Driver, 25, made 168 appearances and scored 19 goals in seven seasons with Hearts. The Oldham, England native made 28 appearances for the Jambos this season, including two in the Europa League, tallying two goals and an assist. The 5-foot-9 winger signed with the senior club in 2003 from the Hearts Academy.

“Andrew is good at taking people on, he crosses a good ball and can take set pieces,” said Dynamo head coach Dominic Kinnear. “He is a hard-working player and I think he will definitely fit in with the team. He has a good attitude on the field and is versatile. He can play on the left or right side of midfield.”

Driver moved to Edinburgh, Scotland at age 11 and joined the Hearts Academy. He played with the English U21 national team at the 2009 European Championships and is now eligible to play for the Scottish national team. Alongside Giles Barnes, Driver becomes the second player from the UK to join the club in the past year. Barnes signed with the Dynamo on August 29, 2012 after playing at Doncaster.

“I am very excited about the opportunity to come and play for the Dynamo,” Driver said. “I have followed MLS over the years and Houston has stood out as one of the top teams. I know a lot of success has been because of the work of Dominic Kinnear, so I am delighted to have the chance to learn from him and improve as a player under him.”

Driver is known as a wide player versatile enough to play on the left or right side of the field. He adds depth to a midfield that includes Brad Davis, Boniek Garcia, Ricardo Clark, Adam Moffat, Luiz Camargo and Barnes.

“It’s always exciting to add a young international player with talent and experience,” said Dynamo President Chris Canetti. “Andrew will add valuable depth to the squad at a time when we are set to face a heavy load of games between MLS and Champions League.

The Dynamo open the 2013 season on Saturday, March 2 when they host D.C. United at BBVA Compass Stadium in a rematch of the 2012 Eastern Conference Championship. Tickets are on sale for the first 5 games at www.houstondynamo.com/tickets. Dynamo full-season ticket packages start at $400 and include 20 home games. To purchase your package or for more information on 2013 season tickets, call (713) 276-GOAL.

ANDREW DRIVER

Full Name: Andrew Driver

Position: Midfielder

Height: 5’10” Weight: 175 lbs.

Date of Birth: November 20, 1987

Birthplace: Saddleworth, Oldham, England

Citizenship: Scotland

Last Club: Heart of Midlothian F.C. (Scotland)

How Acquired: On loan from Hearts

ABOUT THE HOUSTON DYNAMO

The Houston Dynamo are a Major League Soccer club that has won two MLS Cup championships and four conference championships in its first seven seasons and qualified to represent the United States in international competition six times, including the 2013-14 CONCACAF Champions League. The team currently trains in the Methodist Champions’ Field at Houston Amateur Sports Park (HASP), the premier training facility in Southeast Texas, and plays at BBVA Compass Stadium in downtown Houston. For more information, log on to www.HoustonDynamo.com or call (713) 276-7500.

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