Riverhounds Announce First Wave of Player Signings

The Pittsburgh Riverhounds finally were able to make some player announcements today.

And from the looks of it, there are a few more quality returning players, along with confirmation of the acquisition of goalkeeper Mauricio Vargas, after that signing was leaked last week by other sources.

The other new name is that of Alex Harlley.

But maybe some of the most significant news from the announcement made by the team is that in addition to returning last year’s two leading scorers, Rob Vincent and Kevin Kerr, the Hounds will bring back South African playmaker Lebo Moloto, who finished strong last season with stunning goals against the Charlotte Independence and Rochester Rhinos.

Stephen Okai, Sterling Flunder, Nick Kolarac and Drew Russell are also set to return in 2016.

The club expects to make further signing announcements in the coming week as USL and U.S. Soccer Federation approvals are received.

This essentially means that the mainstay starting midfielders, with the exception of 2015 captain, Danny Earls, have been retained.

Flunder returns as the team’s longest-tenured player, with 127 appearances in six seasons with the Hounds.   He is third on the team’s all-time appearances list, only behind Gary DePalma and David Flavius.

There was no official word on the signing of Ghanian MF James Bissue, who was reported to be headed to Pittsburgh based on reports last week.

The club expects to make further signing announcements in the coming week as USL and U.S. Soccer Federation approvals are received.

More on Harlley

Harlley arrived in the United States in 2010 to play collegiately at Yavapai College in Prescott, Arizona.

He played for three summers with Californian side Santa Clarita Storm in the NPSL before signing his first professional contract with the Atlanta Silverbacks in March 2014. He was listed as one of the North American Soccer League’s 11 Young Players to Watch during the 2015 season.

Harlley played three games for the Silverbacks — starting once and playing a total of 104 minutes with no goals or assists.  He did pick up a yellow card.

Harlley is the nephew of Togolese legend and former Arsenal striker Emmanuel Adebayor.

Moving On

Securing a new goalkeeper had been high on the Hounds’ priority list for the offseason. Jamaican national team stopper Ryan Thompson left the club after making 10 appearances and rookie Calle Brown moved on after agreeing terms with the Houston Dynamo of Major League Soccer.

image
Vini Dantas is not returning to the Hounds in 2016.

The club has also parted ways with Brazilian forward Vini Dantas.

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