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TRANSACTIONS: Hounds Make Move for Mensah

By Staff, 01/29/20, 12:05PM EST


Switchbacks sign former Tigres attacking midfielder; Loudoun adds Gomez to midfield corps

PITTSBURGH – Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC announced on Wednesday it had signed forward Ropapa Mensah to a one-year contract with a club option for the 2021 season.

Mensah comes to Pittsburgh with three seasons of USL Championship experience under his belt, previously playing for Nashville SC and Penn FC. The striker has racked up 18 goals and 10 assists in 80 career appearances (45 starts) at this level of competition.

“Ropapa is a young player who has already had an impact in this league,” said Hounds Head Coach Bob Lilley. “He is a player with good size, pace and skill that makes defenders uncomfortable, and we expect him to be a big asset for us this season.”

Over the past two seasons, Mensah competed for Nashville SC where he recorded 11 goals and eight assists as the side reached the postseason in both of its campaigns in the USL Championship. The 22-year-old scored the first goal in Nashville’s professional era on Feb. 10, 2018, against Atlanta United FC at First Tennessee Park during a preseason friendly.

Mensah had previously competed in the Championship for Penn FC, where he recorded seven goals and two assists in the 2017 season.

The Accra, Ghana native began his professional career in 2016 with Inter Allies of the Ghana Premier League, the top tier of professional soccer in the country, and logged 19 games and three goals. He was loaned to Penn FC and Nashville SC over the course of the 2017 and 2018 seasons before the latter purchased his contract outright for the 2019 campaign.

SWITCHBACKS SIGN FORMER TIGRES MIDFIELDER: Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC announced on Tuesday it had signed Uvaldo Luna for the 2020 USL Championship season.

“I'm grateful for this opportunity and willing to give it my all for this team with the best mindset to do things right, and I'm happy to start this new challenge,” said Luna. “I'm looking forward to a successful season with my team.”

Luna has previously played professionally in Liga MX with Tigres UANL and Atlas as well as Colombia with Patriotas, Once Caldas, and Unión Magdalena. The Texas native got his start in the Tigres UANL Youth Academy before making his senior team debut in 2013. The attacking midfielder has eight goals in 79 professional appearances.

The 26-year-old also brings youth international experience to the Switchbacks, having competed for Mexico at the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey. Luna scored goal against Mali as Mexico advanced to the knockout stage.

“We are incredibly excited to welcome Uvaldo to the Switchbacks,” said Switchbacks Head Coach Alan Koch. “He continues the trend of what we are building with his technical ability and also has the dynamic ability to be a game-changer for us this season. After positive experiences in Mexico and Columbia, it's going to be exciting to see what he can do on the American soccer landscape.”

LOUDOUN ADDS GOMEZ TO MIDFIELD: Loudoun United FC announced on Tuesday it had signed Argentine midfielder Gabriel Gomez ahead of the 2020 USL Championship season.

Gomez joins Loudoun United from Club Atlético Nueva Chicago in the Argentinian Primera B Nacional, the second tier of Argentine professional soccer. The 22-year-old is the son of D.C. United’s prolific midfielder, Christian Gomez, who played four seasons over two stints with the club from 2004-2007 then again in 2009; guiding the Black-and-Red to their fourth MLS Cup title in 2004.

“Gabby is a talented attacking player who trained with us last year and proved he was ready for the next step. He will add value to our culture and attacking style of play,” said Loudoun Head Coach Ryan Martin. “With his family ties to the club, he bleeds Black-and-Red and has loved this club his whole life. I know he is excited to get started on his professional journey and we are excited to have him here.”

Following in his father’s footsteps, Gomez returns to the D.C. United family with their USL Championship partner after spending the summers of 2018 and 2019 training with the D.C. United U-23 side.

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