Photo courtesy Steve Kingsman / Freestyle Photography / Ottawa Fury FC
FRESNO, Calif. — Fresno FC announced on Monday it had signed forward Pedro Ribeiro, pending league and federation approval. Ribeiro brings MLS experience from both the Philadelphia Union and Orlando City SC, having made 30 appearances in the league across three seasons.
“We needed a No. 9 that’s played at a high level and we have that in Pedro Ribeiro” said Foxes Head Coach Adam Smith. “Pedro has size, strength, can play well with his back to goal, off the shoulder, in the channels and has a very good eye for goal. Plus having somebody who has played in the top level domestically in this country is only going to add to the ambition of our organization.”
The 6-foot-4 Ribeiro was selected by the Union with the 15th selection in the 2014 MLS Supplemental Draft and spent much of his rookie season on loan with the Harrisburg City Islanders. A former standout in the Premier Development League with Reading United AC, Ribeiro recorded four goals and two assists in 12 appearances for Harrisburg, and helped the side reach the 2014 USL Cup before it fell to Sacramento Republic FC.
Following back surgery in 2016, Ribeiro returned to the City Islanders last year and notched three goals and four assists for the side. The 27-year-old now heads west to join up with the 2018 USL expansion club.
“I’m extremely excited to start my journey with Fresno,” Ribeiro said. “I’ve heard that it’s an area that lives and breathes soccer and there’s nothing better than that for a player. Being an expansion franchise is a great opportunity to make a statement and achieve what no other team has ever achieved on its first year. Amazing players have been signed by an incredible coaching staff, front office and ownership group.”
“We’re delighted to add Pedro to our inaugural squad and the depth he’ll bring to us this season,” added Fresno General Manager Frank Yallop. “He has all the traits we want in a forward; he’s dynamic, has great size and is a natural finisher.”