This is an opinion column.
One of the key performers for Birmingham Legion FC in its inaugural 2019 season is making a return to The Magic City, pending league and federation approval.
Zach Herivaux was a player who brought a fire to the field every time he set foot on the pitch. From controlling the tempo of the game through crisp, clean passing and ball control to standing up for teammates and getting in the faces of opponents all year long, the Haitian national team midfielder was a guy I loved watching play for the squad.
The Legion recently signed Herivaux to a new contract and the midfielder will look to have a significant impact in his second stint with the Boys in Black.
“Having worked closely with Zach in the past, [Head Coach] Tommy [Soehn] and I are excited to bring him back to Birmingham,” Legion FC President Jay Heaps said in a press release. “He was a great addition to our locker room in 2019, and we think he’ll bring a lot to the group this season.”
Herivaux saw the field 23 times in 2019 and scored an important goal against North Carolina FC in the opening round of the USL Playoffs that season.
In total, he created 14 chances and five total shots, added 19 interceptions on the defensive side of the ball, made 20 clearances and had 35 tackles. Additionally, he completed 85% of his passes.
“I’m excited to be back in Birmingham and continue to build off the club’s past two seasons,” said Herivaux in the press release. “I believe that we have a very talented squad and a great staff and, of course, amazing fans, so I think we can do some great things this year.”
Herivaux starred for San Antonio FC in 2017, on loan from Major League Soccer side New England Revolution.
After spending 2019 in Birmingham, he returned to SAFC in 2020 and made eight appearances with one assist in gameplay.
Legion FC is known for bringing in former Revolution talent, including current midfielder and seasoned veteran Daigo Kobayashi and now retired forward Femi Hollinger-Janzen. Herivaux is just one member off that list.
This season will serve as Herivaux’s sixth professional season after he initially signed with the Revolution in 2015.
Originally hailing from Boston, Herivaux made 10 total MLS appearances, including two starts for the Revs. In Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup play, he scored two goals in eight appearances.
While playing for the Haitian National Team, Herivaux has made 15 appearances. In his time with Les Grenadiers, he has registered two assists.
Although FIFA video game stats do not reflect the authentic qualities of a soccer player, Herivaux was given a 57 overall rating in the 2020 edition of the game.
He is also cousins with globally respected tennis player and former singles No. 1 (WTA rankings) Noami Osaka.
All in all, I am very excited for the return of Herivaux. He’s big, lanky, talented and a solid attribute on both sides of the ball.
Let’s all do our part in welcoming him back to The Magic City.