[MLS TRANSACTIONS]Alessandro Nesta, who played on Italy's 2006 World Cup team, has signed with the Montreal Impact. The 36-year-old Nesta is the sixth former world champion to join an MLS team, though none has played on a team that has advanced past the conference semifinals.
Nesta, a four-time Serie A Defender of the Year, played a total of 417 games in Serie A with Lazio and AC Milan.
"I'm very happy to be here," said Nesta in a statement. "Despite some offers to continue my career in Europe, I was looking for a new challenge and wanted to play in MLS. Upon visiting my friend, Marco [Di Vaio], to see him play his first game with Montreal, I met great people in this club. I really liked what I saw and I was convinced Montreal was where I wanted to be."
Nesta is the third Italian to join the Impact after forwards Bernardo Corradi, 36, and Di Vaio, 35.
Three of the former MLS champions -- Brazilians Branco and Denilson and GermanLothar Matthaeus -- lasted no more than a season in MLS. Frenchmen Youri Djorkaeff (10 goals in two seasons) and Thierry Henry (25 goals in the equivalent of two seasons) have had better success with the Red Bulls, though the club has gone winless in four two-game playoff series.
PLAYER (MLS CLUB, YEARS) WORLD CUP (YEAR)
Branco (MetroStars, 1997) Brazil (1994)
Lothar Matthaeus (MetroStars, 2000) Germany (1990)
Youri Djorkaeff(New York, 2005-06) France (1998)
Denilson(FC Dallas, 2007) Brazil (2002)
Thierry Henry(New York, 2010-12) France (1998)
Alessandro Nesta (Montreal, 2012) Italy (2006)