Armada FC Signs 2015 NASL Best XI Midfielder Richie Ryan

Dec 15, 2015

Armada FC Public Relations | Dec. 15, 2015

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Armada FC announced the signing of former Ottawa Fury FC midfielder Richie Ryan on Tuesday, pending ITC approval.

Fitting in with Armada FC head coach and technical director Tony Meola’s theme of bringing in players who have a proven track record of winning, Ryan played at a high level in England, Ireland, Scotland and Belgium prior to making the move to the North American Soccer League.

He comes to Jacksonville following two seasons as Ottawa’s captain, where he made 39 starts and logged 3,499 minutes in 41 total appearances while notching four goals and three assists. He was named to the NASL’s Best XI and led Ottawa to the best record in the NASL’s 2015 Fall Season and an appearance in the NASL Championship Final in November.

"I look forward to having Richie Ryan added to our group as he brings us a proven leader that has performed at a high level in the league,” Meola said. “I expect Richie to be an integral part of the culture that my staff and I are trying to build both on the field as well as in our locker room. I have spoken to Richie, and he is extremely excited to get to Jacksonville and get started."

Prior to joining Fury FC in 2013, he played for League of Ireland Premier Division side Sligo Rovers from 2008-11. In 2010, Ryan was named PFAI Player of the Year after leading the club to its second straight FAI Cup and scoring five goals in his 111 appearances that included qualifying matches in the UEFA Europa League.

He also spent 2012 with the Scottish Premier League’s Dundee United, where he made 33 appearances for the Terrors including a pair of UEFA Europa League qualifiers. He returned to Ireland in August 2012 and signed midseason with the Republic of Ireland’s most successful club, Shamrock Rovers. Ryan made 13 appearances for Shamrock and helped the club capture the EA Sports Cup that included a semifinal win over new Armada teammate Pascal Millien and former club Sligo Rovers.

Ryan began his youth career in the academy of English Premier League club Sunderland and made his professional debut in April 2003. He was loaned out to Scunthorpe United before signing permanently with the club in 2005. In 2006, Ryan moved on to Boston United FC, an English Football League Two club at the time. In 2007, he signed with Royal Antwerp, the oldest club in Belgium, before signing with Sligo Rovers.

The Armada FC expects to announce more player signings in the coming days.