The Rapids acquired the U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) striker for $300,000 in 2022 General Allocation Money (GAM).
Columbus could also receive up to an additional $1.1M in GAM if Zardes reaches multiple performance metrics and re-signs with the club for three years following the 2022 season.
The Rapids announced Zardes, 30, will occupy a Designated Player slot on the Rapids’ roster.
"Crew family! Thank you for the amazing journey and memories," Zardes tweeted. "Thank you for welcoming my family with open arms. Columbus will always have a special place in my heart! Inspiring the next generation was one of the Goals and I hope I fulfilled that."
Zardes has 101 career goals and 31 career assists from 276 appearances with the Crew and Los Angeles Galaxy.
"Gyasi is an elite level attacker with a strong history of production and a successful track record both in MLS and with the U.S. Men’s National Team," said Pádraig Smith, Colorado Rapids Executive VP & General Manager. "His character, mentality, experience and goal scoring prowess will greatly benefit our team. We’re thrilled to bolster our offense with his signing and look forward to welcoming him to Colorado."
Zardes is the Crew's third all-time leading goal scorer with 61 goals in 122 appearances. Zardes helped the Crew capture the 2020 MLS Cup, as well as the 2021 Campeones Cup.
Zardes began his professional career in 2013 with the Galaxy where he made 154 appearances in five seasons, leading the club to the 2014 MLS Cup.
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