Nashville SC announced the signings of forward Alan Winn, midfielder Ian McGrath and keeper Micah Bledsoe. The three players are already training with the team and will be available to play against Atlanta United on Saturday.
Winn was drafted 25th overall by Colorado Rapids in the second round of the 2018 MLS SuperDraft. The 21-year-old forward is from Texas but played for the University of North Carolina from 2014-2017. He led the team with 11 goals and two assists in his senior season along with being named a a United Soccer Coaches Second Team All-American while leading the Tar Heels to the NCAA Men’s College Cup in 2017 for the second consecutive season.
In an interview with sbisoccer.com, North Carolina head coach Carlos Somoano described Winn as a “hardened player” who has had to compete at every level. Somoano believes Winn is “battle tested” and ready to shine at the next level.
Winn can play in the middle, but also has the ability to play wide. This is what Winn told SBI before the MLS SuperDraft: “I believe that I’m a threat in taking players on and really opening up the defense and spreading them out wide and staying on the touchline and coming in,” Winn said. “Really just moving the defense around so they become disorganized. I feel those are my strengths as well as going in behind with my timing and running off the ball. That’s what I feel is a really strong asset that could help me make an impact in my first year.”
Winn played for Tobacco Road FC in the PDL last season making 8 appearances, scoring 2 goals, tallying 2 assists and taking 14 shots in 698 minutes.
NBC Sports Nicholas Mendola said McGrath “can play almost every position up the center of the pitch” when evaluating the midfielder for the 2018 MLS SuperDraft. At 6-feet-4-inches tall, he can provide a size advantage on the attack and when defending.
McGrath played his college soccer for the University of Evansville from 2014-2017. The 21-year-old scored a team-high 11 goals in 2016 with the Purple Aces. TopDrawerSoccer ranked McGrath as the 83rd best player in college last year.
McGrath is familiar with scoring in Nashville as he scored the game-winner against Belmont University in September of 2015. He was a two-time All-Region performer and led Evansville in goals and points as a senior with 12 and 30, respectively.
Bledsoe signed with Louisville City FC in March of 2017 after playing four years at Lipscomb University. He did not see any regular season game action with Louisville last season.
As a freshman, he was named to the Atlantic Sun Conference All-Freshman team after finishing 42nd in the NCAA in total saves. The Cincinnati, Ohio native started 52 games in his four-year career with the Bisons.