Vancouver Whitecaps add former Toronto FC centre back Doneil Henry

The 24-year-old from Brampton, Ont., spent the bulk of his time with West Ham

Doneil Henry is heading back to Canada.

The Vancouver Whitecaps announced Friday they have acquired the Canadian international and former Toronto FC centre back from West Ham United of the English Premier League via Major League Soccer’s allocation process.

Henry was Toronto’s first academy product to sign a professional contract back in 2010, scoring five times in 93 appearances across all competitions before leaving for Europe in 2015.

The 24-year-old from Brampton, Ont., spent the bulk of his time with West Ham on loan at other clubs, including then-Championship side Blackburn Rovers.

Henry, who has played 22 times for Canada, was honoured with the country’s under-20 player of the year award in 2012.

But the six-foot-two, 180-pound defender never gained much traction at West Ham, where he played just one first-team match in the 2015-16 UEFA Europa League, before suffering a significant knee injury in November 2016 while on loan to Denmark’s AC Horsens.

“Doneil is an athletic centre back who’s strong in the air. He will be a good complementary piece to our core of defenders,” Whitecaps head coach Carl Robinson, who was co-captain at TFC when Henry was wearing the armband for its academy, said in a statement. “His experience in Europe will serve him well.

“Doneil has a point to prove and we look forward to bringing him in.”

The Whitecaps already have Kendall Waston and Tim Parker as mainstays in the centre of defence, along with Aaron Maund.

Vancouver announced earlier this month it wasn’t picking up the contract option on fellow Canadian international David Edgar, who suffered a season-ending knee injury in December 2016 in a hit-and-run motor vehicle accident, but added at the time the club and player remained in talks.

The Whitecaps finished third in Major League Soccer’s Western Conference in 2017 and won their first-ever playoff game before falling to the Seattle Sounders in the second round.

Vancouver opens pre-season training on Jan. 22, with its 2018 MLS schedule set to begin March 4 against the Montreal Impact at B.C. Place Stadium.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

LETTER: Pitt Meadows prof locks himself away to learn more about today’s budget

B.C. budget risks reducing life expectancy by over investing in medical care: Kershaw cites study

LETTER: ICBC changes a ‘breath of fresh air’

A Maple Ridge resident welcomes the new changes and impact on rates

Maple Ridge Mounties hope someone recognizes this vandal

At least 25 vehicles were damaged overnight Saturday to Sunday in a north Maple Ridge neighbourhood

Pitt Meadows film premiere offers hope to people with learning disabilities

In Normal Isn’t Real four subjects who have learning disabilities and ADHD, share their success stories

Marching for those who’ve disappeared

Fifth annual event in Memorial Peace Park

Protesters barricade Premier John Horgan’s home ahead of B.C. budget unveiling

Demonstrators from the Extinction Rebellion have blocked the Langford driveway

Victoria, Abbotsford record biggest jumps in rent prices nationwide: report

Toronto and Vancouver had priciest rentals in Canada

VIDEO: Convoy of forest industry supporters on its way to Victoria

Rally at the B.C. legislature begins with participants setting off from Campbell River

Teen snowmobiler found safe after overnight search in Okanagan

The teen had been missing since just after 6 p.m. on Monday

New highway proposed between Alberta and B.C.

The route would connect Red Deer to Kamloops

Woman arrested in Cariboo after fuel stolen, police car rammed

Suspect wanted for crimes allegedly committed in Kelowna, Salmon Arm and 100 Mile House

No dramatic shifts expected as B.C. government tables new budget today

Finance Minister Carole James has promised to stay the course when she tables the budget in the legislature

Surrey RCMP recover $80,000 worth of stolen bikes, weapons

Police found the property after executing two search warrants in Newton

Most Read