Minnesota United signs Slovakia midfielder Jan Gregus to DP deal
Minnesota United announced on Thursday that it has signed Copenhagen midfielder and Slovakia international Jan Gregus to a designated player contract.
The 27-year-old has spent the past two-plus seasons in the Danish Superliga, a competition he won in his maiden season with the club, in addition to the Danish Cup. He made 107 appearances for the Danish capital club, including campaigns in both the UEFA Champions League and Europa League.
Gregus has also played for his country on 22 occasions.
"We believe he can be our anchor in the midfield," said Loons sporting director Manny Lagos. "He's the type of player that we need in order to continue the development of our roster and our club."
After allowing an MLS-record 70 goals against in its expansion season, Minnesota conceded 71 in 2018 -- second worst in the league behind Orlando City. The club has struggled to protect its defense, with a revolving door of defensive midfielders unable to replace Sam Cronin, who missed all of 2018 with head and neck injuries.
"He's got a great range of passes, both short and long. He has a great stride to goal, and an imposing stature at 6-foot-3-inches," said manager Adrian Heath. "We know we've got excellent attacking pieces on the roster, but we need to be able to supply the ball to those pieces and we feel that Jan can be the supplier and connector from the midfield to the attack."
Hours before the announcement of Gregus' arrival, backup Loons goalkeeper in 2018 Matt Lampson was selected by the LA Galaxy in the second stage of the MLS re-entry draft.
Lampson made nine starts for Minnesota last season after being traded to the second-year club from the Chicago Fire at the 2018 MLS SuperDraft.