The Riverhounds have brought in a number of players on trial in the first three weeks of the preseason and four that have been here since the beginning — Neco Brett, Mouhamed Dabo, Bakie Goodman and Joe Holland — were officially signed to the team’s roster today to one-year deals with a club option for the 2019 season, pending USL and USSF approval.
The signing of the four players brings the team’s roster to 18 players now under contract for the 2018 season.
Head coach Bob Lilley has indicated that after four or five weeks he was hoping to have his roster up to 19 or 20 players, then hold another spot or two to add any players right before the season starts.
Here are bio’s in the release sent by the Hounds today along with Lilley’s takes on each player.
Neco Brett | 5-8 / 165 | Kingston, Jamaica | Portland Timbers 2
Prior to his time in Portland, Brett starred locally at Robert Morris University. The forward tallied an impressive 42 goals in 54 matches between his sophomore and senior seasons and earned Northeast Conference Player of the Year in 2013 and 2014. Brett also had stints with Fort Pitt FC Regiment and Reading United of the NPSL and PDL, respectively, during this time.
A native of Kingston, Jamaica, Brett played in the Red Stripe Premier League with Harbour View F.C. and Portmore United in 2011-12. He also has experience at the international level, competing with the Reggae Boyz U-17 and U-20 squads.
“We’re happy to have Neco this year, he’s worked exceptionally hard and he’s having success because of his willingness to do whatever necessary,” head coach Bob Lilley said. “He’s a proven goal-scorer and will certainly be pushing guys for playing time because of his determination and work-rate.”
Mouhamed Dabo | 5-9 / 165 | Senegal | Penn FC
Dabo, 22, comes to the club from in-state rival Penn FC, where he spent two seasons at the state capital. Primarily a holding midfielder, Dabo made 42 appearances for the then City Islanders, including being part of the lone Harrisburg squad to capture the Keystone Derby Cup in 2016.
The Senegal native began his playing career in the Inter Milan and Arsenal FC youth systems, as well as made five appearances for the Lions of Teranga U-17 team.
Dabo has one goal so far this preseason coming last week against the University of Charleston.
“Dabo has had a great start to camp and definitely has been one of the more consistent performers so far in preseason,” Lilley said. “He’s a very good ball-winner in the middle of the field and always plays with intensity.”
Bakie Goodman | 5-9 / 145 | Sarasota, Fla. | Detroit City FC
Further bolstering the Hounds midfield, Goodman, 22, joins the club after last playing for Detroit City FC of the NPSL. With Le Rouge, Goodman racked up nine points (2 G/5 A) in 15 appearances.
Goodman experienced a very successful collegiate career in four years with Georgetown University, eventually leading to him being selected by the Seattle Sounders with the 56th overall selection in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft. The Sarasota, Florida native made 80 appearances (71 starts) with the Hoyas, helping the club to three NCAA Tournament appearances, two BIG EAST regular season championships and one conference tournament title in 2015.
Goodman has one goal in three preseason appearances with the Hounds.
“Bakie is a very good possession player,” Lilley said. “He’s a crafty midfielder who we’re excited to work with this year because of his ability to connect passes and successfully work himself out of high pressure areas.”
Joe Holland | 5-10 / 170 | London, England | Houston Dynamo
A native of London, England, Holland, 24, was drafted 10th overall by the Houston Dynamo in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft. The midfielder made five appearances in total with the Orange Crush, as well as split time in the USL with affiliate Rio Grande Valley FC Toros, where he tallied four goals in 13 appearances.
Holland originally came to the states in 2012 to play collegiately for Hofstra University. He enjoyed a successful career with the Pride from 2012-16, amassing 66 points (19 G/28 A) in 79 games and helping the club to back-to-back Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) regular season titles in 2015 and 2016 and an NCAA Tournament appearance in 2015. His list of individual accolades includes CAA Player of the Year and National Soccer Coaches’ Association All-American in 2015, as well as multiple All-Conference and All-Region honors.
“Joe brings creativity to the final third and is able to both create opportunities and score goals out of the midfield,” Lilley said. “After a great career at Hofstra and getting drafted early by Houston, we feel fortunate to have a player of his caliber here in Pittsburgh.”
The Hounds, with seven midfielders, four forwards and three goalkeepers, will likely be adding a few more defenders to the roster in the coming weeks.
Roster breakdown for 2018 season
Forwards (4): Kay Banjo, Neco Brett, Dennis Chin, Romeo Parkes
Midfielders (7): Mouhamed Dabo, Ben Fitzpatrick, Bakie Goodman, Kenardo Forbes, Joe Holland, Christiano François, Kevin Kerr
Defenders (4): Tobi Adewole, Jordan Dover, Joe Greenspan, Raymond Lee
Goalkeepers (3): Mike Kirk, Dan Lynd, Kyle Morton