News in Brief: Ibarra Update , Minneapolis City to Augsburg, Danny Cruz Leaving, and PLA Expansion

by on 4 January 2017

According to ESPN’s Julio Saucedo, Miguel Ibarra is set to rejoin Minnesota United FC this Thursday or Friday

As FiftyFiveOne reported, we knew that Miguel Ibarra was back in town. What we weren’t certain of was when Ibarra would be officially signing with the team. Sources suggest it’ll be this Thursday or Friday. It’ll be great to get the speedy, attacking player back with the Loons.

Minneapolis City to play 2017 NPSL Campaign at Augsburg College

Minneapolis City announced via Twitter it will play its NPSL home games at Augsburg’s Edor Nelson Field. The venue occupies one city block and is located between 24th Avenue South and 23rd Avenue South along Butler Place in Minneapolis. It features a FieldTurf playing surface that was installed in the summer of 2013, and a seated capacity of 1,400 in its bleachers that span its north sideline.

Given the realities of travel for semi-pro soccer teams, it is not uncommon for teams to have pronounced home and away splits favoring the former. Playing in the Premier League of America last year, the Crows averaged 1.4 points per game at home versus 1.2 points per game on the road, with City’s lone road loss coming in the second game of a Friday-Saturday road double header. The field conditions encountered by the Crows at South High School’s Les Barnard Field could charitably have been referred to as inconsistent, and while not aesthetically ideal, there is hope the artificial surface at Edor Nelson can contribute to a better home record for City in its inaugural NPSL season.

Sporting Director Jon Bisswurm told FiftyFive.One, “We are sad to move away from the Barn Yard for nostalgic reasons, and South High School were great partners to work with, but we had to be realistic. The surface there was not one that suited us well — it is set to be redone, which is great, but in its current state we failed to use it as an advantage last year. Which is why we feel that a move to Augsburg College is a great move for our team. The turf will allow us to utilize our speed on the flanks, and it will compliment our possession-focused style. Last year we didn’t lose a match on turf.”

Reporting by Kyle Eliason

It looks like Danny Cruz will be moving on from Minnesota United FC

Danny Cruz posted on twitter a thank you to his teammates and fans in MN and that he is looking forward to his next adventure. A stalwart on the right side of the midfield for Minnesota, he was the ultimate team player and his work ethic endeared him to fans. Good luck where ever you end up next, Danny!

New Signings Francisco Calvo and Johan Venegas have their official first day as Loons on Tuesday

The two newly minted loons are looking good with blazers, open collars and a Minnesota United FC scarf around each of their shoulders.

Not only did they look good, but some lucky fans got some calls from the two Costa Rican internationals.

Premier League of America looks to shore up expansion cities before league meeting on January 14th

Premier League of America is the former league of Minneapolis City and Minnesota United Reserves. The semi-pro league has it’s league meeting on January 14th with divisions and teams being finalized then. While it doesn’t look like Minnesota will have a team this season, Illinois and St. Louis look to be potential targets. The league is targeting January 10th as the date to announce their expansion teams.

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