As the 2017 season rapidly approaches, Phoenix Rising Football Club continue to build out their roster. The latest signing will bring a midfielder from the Eastern Conference of the USL across to the Western Conference.
PRFC announced Friday the signing of former FC Montreal midfielder, Alessandro Riggi. Riggi actually started in the Montreal youth system back in 2010 when he was just 15 years old. At the age of 18 Alessandro traveled to Europe where he would spend the next several years. He spent time with U.C. Sampdoria (Serie A), Celta Vigo B (Segunda Division B) and Atletico S.C. (Portuguese Second Division).
Riggi started to find real success as a pro upon his return to North America to join FC Montreal (the Montreal Impact’s USL club). In the club’s debut season in 2015 Riggi led the team with nine goals and 11 assists. 2016 wasn’t too shabby either, when Riggi would add another six goals and seven assists (both good for second best on the team).
All of that came while FC Montreal struggled mightily. They finished last in the East last season and two spots from the bottom in 2015. It will be interesting to see if he can find a kinship with the other recent PRFC signing, Omar Bravo.
Though PRFC list Riggi as a midfielder, he mostly lined up on the right wing for FC Montreal. It’s possible he’ll fit more as a wide midfielder in Frank Yallop’s system. Injuries forced quite a bit of formation shifting in 2016, but the club listing him as a midfielder seems to indicate the team won’t be switching to a 4-3-3 in 2017 (though the team do have a lot of forwards on the roster).
Expect more signings in the coming week as preseason will open on February 18th in Casa Grande, Arizona. The season starts just five weeks after that with a home game against Toronto FC II. The team currently has only 18 players under contract.
The terms of the deal with Riggi were not disclosed per team and league rules. Hopefully with Major League Soccer starting to disclose more information the United Soccer League will soon follow (considering their strong ties to one another). Be sure to keep coming back to Firebird Rising for news on all the latest signings.