Tacoma Defiance welcomes Georgi Minoungou back to Seattle in open arms as the MLS NEXT Pro team announced the midfielder as its first-ever international transfer. Previously playing on loan last season with Defiance, Minoungou’s impact on and off the field has given him the opportunity to work with the team long-term.
“What it comes down to is his willingness and capacity to reflect, to improve and to make small changes that can turn into big changes,” said Head Coach Wade Webber. “Georgi did enough last year with us to convince us that he was worth [signing].”
Minoungou put up big numbers for Defiance in 2022, recording two goals, four assists, and seven starts during his 18-match tenure. Along with his statistical contributions, Minoungou’s presence on the pitch is undeniable, ultimately determining his roster spot for the upcoming season.
“He's dynamic in a way that we don't have his equivalent…He’s a two footed, very quick, technical and physical player that has a ceiling that I don't even think we've seen yet,” added Webber. “When he's on the field, he's the sort that when he gets the ball, you move a little closer to the edge of your seat; Georgi has some flash in the toolkit.”
Minoungou’s positive attitude also went a long way in deciding his permanent transfer with the club.
“He's a really good guy and sometimes that can be overlooked or not considered,” said Webber. “He's got a big heart, he’s generous and his teammates love him, so he'll be a great presence in the locker room.”
Prior to joining Defiance, Minoungou’s professional experience expanded internationally, having played for second division Czech football club MFK Vyškov and appearing for the Côte d’Ivoire U-20 National Team. Originally from the Ivory Coast, the right midfielder ventured a long way from home, making his earlier experiences in Seattle difficult; however, with the support from the coaching staff, his teammates and players from the First Team like AB Cissoko and Nouhou, he now considers this community “home.”
“It was not easy [at first], but now I think Seattle is a very good city for me, because I’ve got a lot of good friends and Seattle is already like family; I feel very good about it,” said Minoungou.
Being the first-ever permanent transfer signing also comes with great responsibility, but Minoungou emphasized his readiness to take on this challenge and his belief in having a significant future at the club.
“I think my progression will be great in the Seattle Sounders organization,” said Minoungou. “I know that I'll be one of the great players in the MLS and I think many people will remember my name.”