Sporting KC Academy product Gianluca Busio joins Venezia FC in club record transfer
Sporting Kansas City announced today that they have transferred 19-year-old midfielder Gianluca Busio to Venezia FC in Italy’s Serie A pending physical and personal agreement. Busio has joined Venezia in a club record deal after spending five seasons in Kansas City.
“Gianluca embodied all of the core values ââwe look for in a player,” said Sporting Kansas City manager and sporting director Peter Vermes. âHe has always put the team first and has shown tremendous professionalism and an unwavering commitment to improve his game and help the club win. Gianluca is a special talent with an outstanding character and we wish him all the best at Venezia. “
âThis is a very proud moment for me and my family,â said Busio. âI want to thank everyone who made this possible, especially all the people at Sporting KC who helped me become the player and the person I am today. Sport will always have a special place in my heart and I am grateful to have started my career with such a great club. The people, the fans, the city – everything about Kansas City was perfect and it will always feel like home. This is the next step in my career and I am very excited to be coming to Venezia. “
Busio has scored eight goals and nine assists in 70 games for Sporting in all competitions as one of the best teenagers in American football. A native of Greensboro, North Carolina, joined the Sporting Kansas City Academy in 2016 and signed a local player contract at the age of 15 in August 2017, becoming the second youngest player in MLS history to assist in his first full season ( August 4, 2018) and a goal (October 17, 2018).
Busio enjoyed a 2019 breakout season, scoring three goals and one assist in 26 games in all competitions, and becoming a regular in 2020 with an additional two goals and four assists when Sporting led the regular season standings of the Western Conference. In the first round of the 2020 MLS Cup playoffs last November, Busio became the youngest player in league history to score and assist in an after-season game when Sporting played the San Jose Earthquakes at Children’s Mercy Park eliminated.
In the 2021 season, Busio has two goals, three assists and 13 regular season games for a Sporting team that takes first place in the Western Conference. He scored the first goals in Sporting’s 1-1 draw with Orlando on April 23 and a free kick in their 3-2 win over Houston on April 29. Until his last appearance on July 4th, he led the team in minutes (1,152), earned chances (20), won duels (22), won duels (76) and chases to catch up (97).
During his tenure at Sporting, the versatile Busio has been used as a holding midfielder, attacking midfielder, winger and center forward. He has a career record of 30-19-12 in his 61 regular season appearances and ended his sporting stint with assists in back-to-back games against the LAFC on June 26th and the LA Galaxy on July 4th.
Busio was called up to the US men’s national team for the first time this summer. He collected his first three senior internationals in the familiar confines of Children’s Mercy Park and helped the US to three straight wins at the top of Group B from July 11th to 18th. The midfielder then started in the quarterfinals against Jamaica and in the semifinals against Qatar before switching off the bench in the final against Mexico, which resulted in a dramatic 1-0 overtime win on August 1. Busio became the eighth US MNT player to win the Gold Cup as a member of Sporting and the first product of the Sporting KC Academy to join the US MNT for an official competition.
Busio previously represented the United States at levels U-15 through U-20 and was named a finalist for U.S. Soccer Player of the Year in 2019 after scoring Best XI with five goals in the 2019 Concacaf U-17 Championship The FIFA U-17 World Cup 2019 in Brazil won an award and scored one goal.
Venezia FC is an Italian club based in Venice that has secured promotion to the first division of Serie A at the end of the 2020/21 season. Venezia was founded in 1907 and has spent most of its history in Italy’s two top leagues, notably winning the Coppa Italia in 1941. The team starts its 2021-22 Serie A season under coach Paolo Zanetti with a visit to Naples on August 22nd.
Transaction: Sporting Kansas City (MLS) transfer midfielder Gianluca Busio to Venezia FC (Italy).