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January 13, 2022

Yousouffi Selected By NYCFC in Third Round of Major League Soccer SuperDraft

St. Francis Brooklyn forward El Mahdi Youssoufi became the first Terrier selected in the Major League Soccer SuperDraft on Tuesday night when the reigning champion New York City Football Club picked him in the third round.

The selection caps off a banner year for Youssoufi, who was named 2021 Northeast Conference Player of the Year and placed on the United Soccer Coaches All-Northeast First Team.

He finished the regular season with 25 points (12 goals, 1 assist), scoring in all but two games he played in this fall and has scored 20 goals over his three seasons on Remsen Street. He helped lead the Terriers to a second consecutive NEC Tournament championship appearance in October and was an integral part of the 2020-21 team that earned the program's first NCAA Tournament victory.

"We are so excited for Mahdi on being the first St. Francis Brooklyn player to be drafted right out of school," said St. Francis Brooklyn head coach Tom Giovatto. "He has worked so hard and deserves this honor. We are so happy that he will be staying local and playing with the MLS champs NYCFC. We cannot wait to see him at the next level."

"I am beyond thrilled for our very own El Mahdi Youssoufi! He is a shining example what can happen when you combine hard work with a relentless pursuit of success," said St. Francis Brooklyn athletic director Irma Garcia. "Congratulations to a true gentleman with exceptional speed on the field, who exemplifies the true meaning of Brooklyn Tough. This is truly a historical SFC moment."

"Mahdi has represented St. Francis Brooklyn with class for the past three years and helped the Terriers achieve some of their greatest success in program history. We look forward to him competing close to home with the reigning MLS Cup Champions NYCFC and continuing to make us proud at the next level," said Dr. Miguel Martinez-Saenz, president of St. Francis College.

Youssoufi is the third Terrier to be affiliated with an MLS club in the league's 26-year history. Mersim Beskovic was selected by the Tampa Bay Rowdies in 2001 MLS SuperDraft after graduating in 2000, and would go on to appear for the NY/NJ MetroStars (later New York Red Bulls). Vincente Bezecourt signed a contract with United Soccer League's New York Red Bulls II, later earning an MLS contract with the Red Bulls.

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