Nashville Soccer Club announced its first-ever player transfer Wednesday: midfielder Michael Reed, who played for San Antonio FC the last two seasons and served as the team’s captain last year.
Nashville SC and the USL did not disclose the transfer fee paid to San Antonio FC or the terms of Reed’s contract. Purchasing a player’s contract demonstrates Nashville SC wants to join the USL with a strong roster ready to compete.
“We are looking to put the best possible team on the field by acquiring players through all means given to us,” said Nashville SC head coach Gary Smith in the team’s press release. “Reed was a player we had identified as someone who would make a significant impact to our team’s performance. A transfer was the best option in bringing him to Nashville SC.”
What does Reed bring to Nashville?
The 30-year-old scored five goals and notched three assists in 45 games for San Antonio, which finished second in the USL’s Western Conference last year and lost in the conference semifinals to OKC Energy FC. During his captaincy he started 24 games, was rotated out of the squad five times and was an unused sub twice.
Reed has several connections to the team:
- He played college and minor-league soccer alongside Nashville SC fullback Justin Davis, who was announced to the squad last week. The Lobos went 34-18-5 during their three years together, and Reed is third in New Mexico’s record books with 2,135 minutes played in 2009
- Reed also played with Davis for three seasons with Minnesota’s NASL team, which became the MLS’s Minnesota United in 2017. The two played 45 minutes or more together 18 times in Minnesota. When Reed scored his lone goal with the club, Davis was on the field at the time
- Reed played for Nashville SC Coach Gary Smith on the 2015 Atlanta Silverbacks, alongside recent Nashville roster additions Josh Hughes and Kosuke Kimura.
- Nashville SC goalkeeper C.J. Cochran and Reed were also teammates in Atlanta and competed against each other in last year’s Western Conference Semifinals. The game between OKC Energy and SAFC ended tied 1-1 after 121 minutes and went to penalty kicks. Cochran blocked Reed’s penalty shot, which knocked SAFC out of the playoffs.
The team will likely use Reed as a reliable holding midfielder with the ability to press forward in the attack when necessary. He’ll also be counted on to eat lots of minutes in the midfield; in 34 of his 38 starts in San Antonio, he went the full 90 minutes.
Here’s a statistical breakdown of Reed’s 2017 season:
- Reed scored two goals and notched three assists. All but one point came in matches he started and played the entire 90 minutes
- The midfielder was third on the team in key passes (23) and achieved a 78.6 passing success rate
- Reed took 21 shots, only 4 of which were on target. One of his goals was from inside the box and the other off a set piece
- Reed was sixth on the team in minutes played and was only subbed off five times
In short, Reed served as a sturdy defensive midfielder with solid-but-not-flashy passing and defensive stats. His efforts paid off: San Antonio tied for the league lead in clean sheets and conceded fewer goals than any team in the league.
The battle for midfield playing time just got even stiffer.