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Hounds Add Two More; 15 Now Signed for 2016

The Pittsburgh Riverhounds promised more signings.  And sure enough, they made two more official today.
Ghanaian midfielder James Bissue’s signing is now official along with left-sided player Ryan Dodson for the 2016 United Soccer League season pending receipt of both players’ international transfer certificates.
Bissue, 24, began his professional career in 2008 with Eleven Wise based in his hometown of Sekondi. He moved to Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva in 2009 after failing to secure a contract at English side Blackburn Rovers.
Ghana’s Under-20 coaching staff selected Bissue to represent his national team at the 2011 African Youth Championship in South Africa. He moved to Ghana’s capital city Accra the following year to join Hearts of Oak before returning to Eleven Wise in 2014.


Ryan Dodson

Dodson played collegiately at North Carolina and the University of Denver. The 23-year-old forward from Libertyville, Illinois was part of the Tar Heels squad that lifted the 2011 NCAA College Cup before transferring to Colorado for his sophomore year.
He spent the 2015 season in Sweden with IFK Stockaryd/Rörviks IF.
These are clearly a moves that will provide more depth to an already strong midfield and to what seems to what will be a mostly refurbished back line.
In what little I’ve seen on video, Bissue seems to be the kind of player that can distribute the ball well from the central midfield, and the 6-foot Dodson may provide left side presence kind of like Tyler Pasher brought to the Hounds a year ago.
The two signings bring the Riverhounds total roster to 15, including eight new players.
With most MLS rosters being finalized in the next week or so, the Riverhounds, and other USL teams may be waiting to sign a few more players after those round of cuts.  Last week, I was told that the Hounds would like to bring this total to 20 players signed, in addition to the players who will be on loan from Columbus Crew via affiliation.
In case you are trying to keep track, the players who were on the Hounds roster, who have not reported signing for any other team yet this year include: Miroslav Čabrilo, Seth C’deBaca, Matthew Dallman, Michael Green, Danny Earls (2015 captain), Kene Eze, Tyler Pasher, Jereme Raley, Amara Soumah,  Max Touloute, Anthony Virgara, and Fejiro Okiomah.  
It appears that Boris Zivanovic, who played 10 games for the Hounds last season, signed for Slovanian club FC Koper.
In addition, the Hounds might be preparing for the prospects of losing last season’s top goal scorer Rob Vincent.
We will be watching what transpires with Vincent as he has made it past the first wave of roster cuts while on trial with the D.C. United.   The United will begin all competition play on Feb. 23 when they play Querétaro in the first leg of the CONCACAF Champions Cup.
This week, D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen shared his thoughts with Washington Post’s Soccer Insider, Steven Goff on Vincent:

“He has been sharp,” Olsen said, “but there is a lot of competition for roster spots.”

The second stage of the preseason starts Thursday for the United, as they return to Florida and will play friendlies against the Tampa Bay Rowdies, Philadelphia Union, and Montreal Impact.

John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

Riverhounds MF Danny Griffin

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