A few days ago there was news of Philadelphia Union owner Jay Sugarman selling a stock worth 1.2 million dollars. This has sparked many to speculate that the Union are going to be making a splash in the transfer market! While every Union fan was hoping for some news on a new center forward, box to box midfielder, or center back to come to Philly This happened.
OFFICIAL: Philadelphia Union Sign Defender Giliano Wijnaldum
— PhilaUnion (@PhilaUnion) January 5, 2017
The Union signed a new left back! Giliano Wijnaldum joins the club as a discovery signing. Wijnaldum, a 24-year-old left back played in Dutch first division Eredivisie. He was apart of AZ Alkmaar, the club that Earnie Stewart used to be affiliated with! This signing gives the Union new-found depth at the left back position. How will the Dutch defender fit in with the Philadelphia Union this coming season?
Stewart says Giliano can play left back or left center back. Lots of potential.
— Brotherly Game (@BrotherlyGame) January 5, 2017
Wijnaldum is a young, left-sided defender, who is versatile and athletic. He is coming to the squad to improve the left side of the defense, a side that has needed an upgrade for years. Fabinho has been the starting left back for the Union for the past two seasons, and he still could play a factor in 2017. However, Wijnaldum wont be riding the bench. He can play left-centerback if needed, and the Union could need that if they cannot find another starting caliber centerback. Either way, Wijnaldum will be competing for a starting spot with the Union.
“He didn’t just come here to sit on the bench and warm the bench.” – Earnie Stewart
— Jonathan Tannenwald (@thegoalkeeper) January 5, 2017
One thing the newest addition brings to the Union is his athleticism. The Union have done well when their outside backs push up the field. This is something Jim Curtin stresses to the team. Wijnaldum, does this very well according to Stewart who held a press confernece today. He could be a force to be reckoned with if he adjusts to MLS play quickly! Here’s some of his highlights:
This signing is exciting and shows that the Union are making moves to bring in new talent to help the team compete in 2017! Stewart has stressed that there are other position that need attending to.
Stewart confirms that striker and center back are positions of interest in the transfer window. Left back is filled; midfield also priority
— Matthew De George (@sportsdoctormd) January 5, 2017
With these other priorities still unfilled, and Jay Sugarman actually giving Earnie Stewart his checkbook, the Union transfer rumors are far from over! Come back to Philly Sports Network later for a look at possible Union signings in the weeks o come! Silly season is upon us, and it looks to be one full of new signings!
Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)