TACOMA, WASH. – Tacoma Defiance today announced that it has signed midfielder Braudilio Rodrigues to a MLS NEXT Pro contract. Financial terms were not disclosed. Rodrigues joins Defiance after two standout years at Franklin Pierce University, including a prolific 2022 campaign in which he recorded 20 goals and 22 assists, leading the Ravens to the 2022 Division II National Championship and being named the National Player of the Year.
“We are excited to bring Braudilio into the club,” said Vice President of Player Development Henry Brauner, “He’s had a massive influence on the success of Franklin Pierce men’s soccer over the last two years, culminating in them winning a national championship last season, with Braudilio garnering the National Player of the Year award for his 20-goal, 22-assist season. We hope to push Braudilio even more in our environment and we are happy to be able to give him his first steps in the professional game.”
Rodrigues, 23, grew up in Portugal before playing for Franklin Pierce, where he scored 31 goals and tallied 25 assists in 45 career matches over two seasons. He tallied 20 goals (tied for second in Division II) and 22 assists (first in Division II) in 2022, en route to a 25-0-1 season and the National Championship. Following his efforts last season, Rodrigues was awarded the Ron Lenz National Player of the Year award, given to the top men’s soccer player in Division II as well as the United Soccer Coaches National Player of the Year. Rodrigues also was named to the Division II Conference Commissioners Association All-America First Team, All-East Region First Team and All-East Region Player of the Year. Following his two years at Franklin Pierce, Rodrigues ranks ninth in assists (25) and 10th in goals (31).
“We are excited to welcome Braudilio to Defiance,” said Tacoma Defiance Head Coach Wade Webber. “He has plenty of variety in his playing background and a set of skills that can fit anywhere in our attack. He is clever with the ball at his feet and is equally talented with his eye for a pass. His ability to combine with teammates in tight spaces is at a very high level and he has adapted well to our training environment. We think he has potential and will be an exciting player to watch this season.”
The signing of Rodrigues brings Tacoma’s roster to 17 players as the club prepares for its second MLS NEXT Pro campaign.
TRANSACTION: Tacoma Defiance signs midfielder Braudilio Rodrigues to a MLS NEXT Pro contract on February 28, 2023.
Full Name: Braudilio Rodrigues
Hometown: Lisbon, Portugal
Date of Birth: November 15, 1999, in Bissau, Guinea-Bissau
Acquired: Signed on February 28, 2023