Louisville City Offseason Update
It has been a long few months without any Louisville City soccer, but thankfully the preseason is rapidly approaching. For those fans who may have diverted their focus during the offseason, I wanted to take an opportunity to recap all the action the winter months have provided.
Roster turnover is never fun, but it is part of the business. Early in December, LouCity announced their initial roster moves, which included news that Antoine Hoppenot, Alexis Souahy, Pat McMahon, Akil Watts, Kyle Greig, Abdou Mbacke Thiam, and Simon Lefebvre would not be rejoining the team in 2022. As of this writing, only a few have been announced with other clubs, including Souahy to New Mexico United, Greig to the Tampa Bay Rowdies, and Mbacke Thiam to Forward Madison. Chris Hubbard and Jonathan Gomez also ended their LouCity tenor after the 2021 season. Hubbard opted to retire while JoGo made the leap to Europe. Absent from the roster announcement were Wes Charpie, Tyler Gibson, Jimmy McLaughlin, George Davis IV, Parker Siegfried, Paolo DelPiccolo, and Jorge Gonzalez. PDP, Siegfried, Charpie, Gibson, and Gonzalez were all announced over the proceeding weeks as having re-signed with the club. GDIV decided to close out his storied USL career while the fate of McLaughlin has yet to be publicly announced (although it appears doubtful he will re-sign at this point).
Along with hashing out the fate of the 2021 squad, the club was busy procuring new talent for the 2022 season. First was the signing of Owen Damm. The Woodford County grad from Versailles, KY became the 4th academy product to sign a full professional deal. Not long after, Kyle Morton inked a deal with Morados. The former St. Louis keeper had previously been a two-time USL Championship Goalkeeper of the Year finalist and was coming off a stint in the MLS with the Houston Dynamo. The most recent signings were both poached from the Sporting Kansas City system. Amadou Dia, who played in a number of matches for SKC in the MLS over a few seasons as well as some time with the Phoenix Rising, was recruited to help backfill the loss of JoGo. Enoch “Matiti” Mushagalusa, SKC2’s sole bright spot in their 2021 campaign, is a young speedy winger who decided to join a more successful team and appears to be a signing that could be with the team for years to come.
As of this writing, below is the complete 2022 squad. It’s possible there still may be a few more signings to come, but the main starting core is likely already under contract.
Current 2022 Louisville City FC Roster
Forwards: Jorge Gonzalez, Cameron Lancaster, Brian Ownby, Enoch "Matiti" Mushagalusa
Midfielders: Corben Bone, Tyler Gibson, Jay Tee Kamara, Napo Matsoso, Niall McCabe, Carlos Moguel Jr., Paolo DelPiccolo, Elijah Wynder
Goalkeepers: Kyle Morton, Parker Siegfried
Based on the current roster, here are a few speculations on what we could see this upcoming season. While the 4-3-3 has been a staple of the team for the past few seasons, Coach Cruz hasn’t been shy about his love of a back three formation.
The most recent news coming from the club was the announcement that Josh Wynder has signed a new multi-year deal. Josh, the 2nd academy signing to the first team (check out my convo with him), made his debut at just 16 and totaled 11 appearances in the 2021 season. Coach Danny Cruz stated, “His growth last year both as a player and person was a joy to watch every day. To be able to re-sign one of our own academy players to a new deal is a testament to the vision here for our young athletes.” This signing is a vote of confidence in his abilities. If you listen to the podcast, follow me on Twitter, or have read some of my previous work, you know I have not been shy about my desire for the team to start getting younger. The core of this team is getting older and the next generation needs to be established in the next year or two. This is one reason why I’ve been so excited about what the academy can offer the club. Expect more on the roster’s age soon. But, I digress.
With both the preseason and regular season schedules available, we now have dates to look forward to. We will be back in Lynn Family Stadium watching soccer again before you know it! On paper, there is a lot to be excited about. We’ve kept a lot of critical players and brought in new ones that help to continually raise the bar. John Morrissey (@USLTactics) is high on Louisville and that is never a bad sign. We will see soon how this new iteration of LouCity soccer will play out on the pitch!
Want to do a little more reading on LouCity? Might I suggest The Tifos of Louisville City, The Louisville City Youth Movement, Louisville City’s Pathway To The Pros, What Are Expected Goals (xG)?, or What Are Goals Added (G+)?.
Have a friend just getting into LouCity soccer? Be sure to send them the Introduction To Louisville City link to give them a point of reference to learn about the club and league.
Be sure to check out the Vamos Morados Podcast featuring me, Benton, and Zach Allen-Kelly. It’s available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcast, Audible, and Spotify. Everything you need to listen can be found on the Podcast page. Subscribe so you don’t miss an episode!