Demidov, a thirty year-old naturalized Norwegian (born to Russian parents in modern-day Latvia), will bring to Minnesota an extensive European CV and a reputation for tenacity and leadership. Starting as a teenager, Demidov worked his way up through the Norwegian system. Eventually, he earned a move to league giants Rosenborg, where he would play three seasons. During this time, he earned his first caps with the Norwegian national team. His success drew the eye of clubs in top European leagues. He spent several years in Spain with Real Sociedad and Celta Vigo, and in Germany with Eintracht Frankfurt. Most recently, Demidov found a home in SK Brann. He was injured when the team was shockingly relegated in 2014, but stuck with the club and led their immediate promotion in 2015. He then skipped Brann to a second place Tippeligaen finish in 2016 as the team captain.
For Minnesota, Demidov comes with top billing. Our article on Demidov’s potential signing led to several Norwegian fans to reach out and share with us their local scouting report. Demidov was praised as a leader, a quick thinker, and a fighter, who would seem a natural partner to the less experienced but athletically gifted Francisco Calvo. The Loons, it seems, have found their first choice center-back pairing.
At 30, Demidov is the oldest player currently on Minnesota United FC’s roster. He is the twelfth player signed by Minnesota United FC in advance of their inaugural season. He figures to use the fourth of eight possible international slots. As usual, terms of the deal were not disclosed by the club.
On Friday, the club will add several younger players to the roster in the MLS SuperDraft.