The Fire announced Friday that it had signed 2013 MLS SuperDraft pick Yazid Atouba who the club selected with the 30th overall pick.
Atouba, a 20-year old Cameroonian national, has been with the Fire throughout the duration of training camp where he has impressed the club's coaching staff.
Considered somewhat of a project due to his age, Atouba has proven to have the ball skills and speed that could make him a key substitute in the late stages of games this season. The left-footed midfielder scored two goals this preseason against the Columbus Crew on Jan. 30 and Chivas USA on Feb. 5.
"We're pleased to add Yazid to our roster," Fire President of Soccer Operations Javier Leon said in a team statement. "He is a quick, skillful player with tremendous potential. Throughout preseason he has shown that he has the talent to succeed in MLS."
Atouba will be available for selection fort the Fire's season-opener against the Los Angeles Galaxy at the home Depot Center on Sunday. He was passed over in the draft because he had a sub-par Combine, largely the product of a long day of travel the previous day.
But the Fire, which systematically revamped the way in which it goes about signing and scouting players this offseason, had additional information on Atouba that prompted the club to pick him.
He represented Cameroon in 2011 FIFA U-20 World Championships, starting three of four matches. Cameroon reached the Round of 16.