Date of Birth9.28.2000 (22)
Position DetailCentral Defender
Roster CategorySupplemental Slots 21-24
A young centre back who is good in the air, comfortable on the ball, and strong in one-v-one defending, Karifa Yao joined Whitecaps FC after being selected by the club in Stage 1 of the 2022 MLS Re-Entry Draft.
'21-'22: Yao started all 28 of his appearances across all competitions on-loan with Canadian Premier League side Cavalry FC in 2022, helping the team reach the semifinals of the Canadian Premier League Playoffs. In total, the native of Montréal, Québec started 53 of his 56 appearances for Cavalry FC across two seasons on loan with the club, adding two goals and two assists.
'19-'22: Yao signed his first professional contract with CF Montréal (then known as Impact Montréal) on June 4, 2019, as a Homegrown player and went on to make one start and two appearances for the club. The Montréal, Québec native joined the Montréal academy in 2017, starting with the U-17 team before playing two seasons with the Impact U-19 side in the Development Academy. Born in Montreal to an Ivorian father and a Senegalese mother, Yao became the 17th homegrown player to sign a contract with Montréal's first team.
In his youth, Yao played with amateur club Étoiles de l’Est before joining the Impact academy.