Photo courtesy Chris Cowger / Pittsburgh Riverhounds
PITTSBURGH – The Pittsburgh Riverhounds will have a familiar face patrolling their back line in the 2018 USL season, with the club announcing on Friday it had signed former Minnesota United FC defender Joe Greenspan on a one-year deal with a club option for the 2019 season. The signing is pending league and federation approval.
Loaned to the Hounds this past year by the Loons, the 25-year-old center back impressed in his 10 appearances for the Black and Gold.
“We’re excited to have Joe join the team,” said Riverhounds Head Coach Bob Lilley. “I really like his skillset for a center back – he’s a good ball winner, reads the game well and has great leadership qualities. Joe’s going to be a great fit for us and someone that can turn into a top-end player for our team and in this league.”
Greenspan helped the Riverhounds’ backline record four clean sheets in his 10 starts and finishing third on the club with 66 clearances in his time with the club. Greenspan’s efforts saw him earn Team of the Week honors twice, as well as earning nomination for the USL Player of the Month award for the month of May.
Acquired by Minnesota from the Colorado Rapids in exchange for the club’s third round pick in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft prior to last season, Greenspan made four appearances, including three starts, for the Loons. Greenspan was originally drafted by the Rapids in the second round (26th overall) of the 2015 MLS SuperDraft. From 2015-16, Greenspan made four appearances with the Rapids, in addition to loan stints in the USL with Colorado Springs Switchbacks FC and the Charlotte Independence.
A graduate of the United States Naval Academy, Greenspan split time playing in Colorado and on loan, while also fulfilling his military duties. He spent one year in active duty with the Navy after graduating in 2014 before being transferred into the Navy Reserve and allowed to pursue a soccer career.
Greenspan played four seasons at the Naval Academy, helping the school to its first NCAA tournament win in 42 years in 2013. For his collegiate career, he tallied 18 goals in 78 appearances, earning All-American honors both his junior and senior seasons.