NYCFC understood the assignment after their opening defeat to Nashville. Ultimately, adding more talent was always a priority for the club, which is why they signed midfielder James Sands to a long-term extension that expires in 2027.
Sands has spent the last two seasons with the Rangers in the Scottish Premiership. He played in 17 matches during the 2022 season, starting in 10 games and accumulating 921 minutes. While he didn’t contribute much in the goal-scoring department, he served as a solid defensive midfielder.
NYCFC is happy to have a familiar face back in the fold:
The 22-year-old has seen his market value drop over the past few years after reaching a high of $4 million back in 2021 before being loaned to the Rangers.
Having played in the Europa League and helped the Rangers qualify for the UEFA Champions League group stage, Sands is coming from an established club with elevated expectations in the European landscape.
Coming back to NYC FC certainly represents a step in another direction, but he has an opportunity for regular playing time and to perform in his home state. Sands grew up in Rye, New York, about a 30-minute drive away from New York City.
“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. “VIA NYCFC.