New York, N.Y., March 1, 2023 – New York City Football Club (NYCFC) today announced that Midfielder James Sands has returned from his loan spell at Rangers FC and has signed a new contract through the 2027 season.
Sands will be available for the match against Chicago Fire, subject to receipt of his ITC.
Sporting Director David Lee said: “We are delighted to welcome James back to New York. He has gained valuable experience playing in Europe over the past 13 months, including playing in both the Europa League and helping Rangers to qualify for the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 2010/11. I’d like to thank Ross Wilson and Rangers FC for their cooperation in allowing James to return now and wish them the best of luck for the remainder of their season. His time with Rangers has enhanced his development and we are excited for him now to return to New York and play a critical role for our Club in 2023 and beyond.
“It was a priority for us to try and ensure James returned to New York this season. Despite opportunities to continue his career in Europe, we are pleased that we’ve been able to reach an agreement on a new contract and convince James that this is the right place for his continued career progression. We know James’ ambition remains to play at the highest levels in Europe and we will continue to support him with his career aspirations.
“James is not only a special player; he is also a natural leader and fantastic role model, and with his added experience in Europe, we see him as a key player who will immediately help our team contend for more trophies. Since day one, our fans have been supportive of James and I'm sure that the return of one of their own and a player of his caliber will be a moment of celebration.”
Since arriving in Glasgow, the American midfielder has made 41 appearances tallying 2,495 minutes for the Club contributing with one goal in all competitions. During his tenure in Scotland, Sands won the 2022 Scottish Cup and featured in the 2021 Europa League final, as well as UEFA Champions League group play.
James Sands said: “I am excited to return to New York. As someone who grew up in New York and played for local youth teams and the NYCFC academy, it was and continues to be a great honor to represent this Club. NYCFC has had a tremendous impact on my development, the Club's support of my initial step in Europe and continued understanding of my career goals has been very important to me.
“I would like to thank Rangers for the fantastic opportunity to play with a top-notch European team. Reaching the Europa League final, playing in the Champions League, and winning the Scottish Cup are just a few of the many positive memories that I will take away with me. The level of support from the Rangers’ fans is second to none.
“As I return to New York, I am looking forward to playing with some of my former teammates as well as many new ones. I’m excited about the Club's vision for the future and hope I can use my experience abroad to help the Club achieve its goals and bring home some more silverware for our incredible fans.”
Sands became NYCFC’s first-ever Homegrown signing in 2017 making his debut against the Colorado Rapids. Since then, the midfielder made 76 appearances logging in 6,730 minutes and providing one assist for the ‘Boys in Blue’ across all competitions. Sands helped guide the team to its first piece of silverware in 2021 while also earning the NYCFC Young Player of the Year accolade and being named to the MLS All-Star Team.
Transaction: New York City Football Club sign Midfielder James Sands to a contract extension through 2027.
Name: James Sands
Weight: 185 lbs
Date of Birth: 07/06/2000
Hometown: Rye, NY