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USL Review: Birmingham adds Atlanta draft pick Asiedu in busy week for league

Birmingham Legion FC signing former Atlanta United draft pick Anderson Asiedu was one of the many roster moves in a busy week for the USL Championship.

Anderson Asiedu plays for ATL UTD 2 in a game against Swope Park Rangers on May 19, 2019. (Photo courtesy Atlanta United)

It’s been a busy past week or so for general managers in the USL Championship. It seemed like every day, there was a new signing, or three.

Birmingham Legion FC  Monday brought aboard Anderson Asiedu, who was a first-round 2019 SuperDraft pick by MLS Cup champ Atlanta United FC. The Five Stripes waived Asiedu at the end of May though. The UCLA product never appeared with the first team in Major League Soccer, but did see action in 10 games for their USL affiliate, Atlanta United 2. The 23-year-old native of Ghana tallied one assist with the 2s, mostly being deployed as a deep-lying midfielder.

Following a season-ending injury to Chandler Hoffman, Asiedu could give the Legion a midseason offensive boost.

“We’re excited to add Anderson to our group,” Legion president Jay Heaps said in a statement. “We hope he has an immediate impact on and off the field for our team, and we look forward to having him play as soon as possible.”

Elsewhere in the league, Hartford Athletic signed a Chelsea academy product, Phoenix Rising FC signed a young defender from Liverpool’s academy and the Charlotte Independence sold a player to Australia.

Details on those moves and more news and notes from around the league below in the USL Review:

Things to know

  • Four USL Championship players will join Jamaica’s U-23 side for Olympic qualifying games. The Reggae Boyz called up Kevon Lambert (Phoenix Rising), Nicque Daley (Charleston Battery), Casey Reid (Reno 1866 FC) and Jamoi Topey (Bethlehem Steel FC).
  • Atlanta United 2 and the Charleston Battery have rescheduled their postponed July 5 match for Sept. 18. The match will kick off at 7:30 p.m. ET in Kennesaw, Georgia.
  • Former ATL UTD 2 player Jon Gallagher started, played 90 minutes and was named man of the match as Scottish Premiership side Aberdeen FC won its Europa League opener 2-1.
  • Orange County SC announced that midfielder Liam Trotter and forward Vinicius will both have knee surgery. Their timetables to return are unknown.
  • Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC announced plans on Wednesday for a health and sports complex to be located in Coraopolis, Penn.. The complex, which will span 78 acres, would be completed in 2021 and serve as a training center for the Riverhounds and a headquarters for the club’s youth development academy.
  • Nashville SC and New York Red Bulls II have rescheduled a previously postponed match for Aug. 21 at First Tennessee Park. The original game was abandoned at halftime on June 26. The rescheduled game will be played from the opening kickoff.
  • Birmingham Legion FC announced this week that forward Chandler Hoffman will miss the rest of the season after rupturing the PCL in his left knee. Hoffman had scored four goals in 17 games for the expansion side.
  • Last weekend, on July 13, New York Red Bulls II thumped ATL UTD 2 by a score line of 8-1. Chris Lema became the first USL Championship player this season to notch four goals in one game.
  • Former MLS MVP Luciano Emilio joined Loudon United FC as an assistant coach, according to the Washington Post.

Transactions

  • Hartford Athletic signed defender Alex Davey last week to a contract for the remainder of the 2019 season. Davey, 24, is a former Scottish youth international, featuring for his country’s U-19 side. He came up in the academy of EPL giant Chelsea, but never appeared for the club’s senior team. He went on-loan to and played for several clubs in the third, fourth and fifth tiers of soccer in England.
  • Nashville SC announced Monday that it acquired defender Jimmy Ockford on a short-term loan from the San Jose Earthquakes. A 27-year-old American, Ockford hasn’t appeared in a game with the Earthquakes this season but played in 15 games with the club in 2018. Ockford started and scored for Nashville on Wednesday in a 2-0 win over Memphis 901 FC.
  • Saint Louis FC announced Tuesday it had acquired Masta Kacher from Real Monarchs SLC. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The native of Algeria had four goals and three assists in 38 appearances with the Monarchs.
  • On Thursday, Saint Louis FC announced another addition, acquiring midfielder Collin Fernandez from Phoenix Rising FC. Fernandez had played in nine games for Phoenix this season. He previously played with Saint Louis in 2016, on loan from the Chicago Fire.
  • San Antonio FC has acquired forward Frank Lopez on-loan from LA Galaxy II. Lopez will spend the remainder of the 2019 season in San Antonio. He has scored six goals in 14 appearances for Los Dos this season.
  • Via transfer, the Tulsa Roughnecks acquired Canadian defender Nicholas Prasad from SpVgg Bayreuth, a club in the fourth tier of German soccer. Prasad, 23, came up in the Vancouver Whitecaps academy and also has seven caps for the Fiji national team.
  • Phoenix Rising FC announced Monday that it had signed defender Corey Whelan via transfer from English Premier League giant Liverpool. Whelan, 21, had been in Liverpool’s academy system since 2007, but he never appeared in a match with the senior team. On loan, he has played for professional teams in the fourth and fifth tiers of English football. Whelan has also played for Ireland’s youth national teams. He was the captain of Liverpool’s U-23 side.
  • Carlos Alvarez, the former No. 2 overall pick in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, has signed with Loudon United FC. Alvarez, 28, scored seven goals in 29 games with the Las Vegas Lights last season. He played in more than 50 MLS games from 2013 through 2015.
  • The Charlotte Independence announced Thursday that it sold midfielder Michael Maria to Adelaide United FC, a club in Australia. The 24-year-old midfielder played in six games with the Independence this year, but missed a stretch of the USL season while playing in the Gold Cup with Curacao. Maria previously played in the Netherlands and Germany.
  • Sacramento Republic FC announced Thursday that it signed Polish forward Dariusz Formella to a contract for the remainder of the 2019 season with a club option for 2020. A 23-year-old winger, Formella comes to USL after spending seven seasons in Poland’s first division where he won a league title and two Polish SuperCups. He has experience played in qualifying matches for the UEFA Champions League and has featured for Poland’s U-21 side.

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