You could certainly be excused for never having heard of Mustapha Jarju before the Vancouver Whitecaps announced him as their second Designated Player on Tuesday. The 24-year-old's most extensive professional experience came in the Belgian second division, where he helped lead the RAEC Mons to promotion and has scored 43 goals over 118 matches.
No one is going to accuse the Whitecaps of making this kind of signing for scoring publicity points with fans, something that actually pleases 86 Forever. SB Nation's Whitecaps blog notes that in a season that has gone off the rails, this is a reason to believe better days are ahead:
The Vancouver Whitecaps have gotten a lot wrong this season but this looks like exactly the right thing to do. They've signed a promising 24-year-old with international pedigree, someone who brings a good balance of skills but has also proven he can score in leagues better than Major League Soccer. He fills a position that doesn't need filling but he can move around the field and brings a skillset the team probably doesn't have right now. He gives the team more desperately-needed flexibility up and down the lineup and far more options going forward. This is a player who, if all goes according to plan, should help them right now and will help them even more in the years to come.