Canadian Soccer International Forward Kyle Porter joins Atlanta Silverbacks
NASL: March 5, 2015 – Canadian international and 2013 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup champion Kyle Porter joined the Atlanta Silverbacks after signing on for the 2015 campaign, the club announced Wednesday pending the receipt of an international transfer certificate.
“In all honesty, I think Kyle is one of the most exciting additions that we’ve added to the group this offseason,” head coach Gary Smith said. “He’s quick, he’s powerful, and he is a very talented player. Individually, he’s capable of producing excellence on the ball in 1-versus-1 situations and he has an extraordinary eye for goal at this level.”
Porter, who has represented Canada at the Under-17, U-20 and senior level, made his debut for the senior national team on Jan. 26, 2013, in a 4-0 loss to Denmark as a 70th minute substitute. His second cap came in a scoreless draw with the United States.
“Talent-wise, he’s certainly in the top-10 in this league on an individual level,” Smith said. “I think he just needs some stability, and he will find that here. With some good direction and a very well-organized group, we know he’s capable of performing at the highest level.
“For forwards and the creative-type players like him, it’s all about productivity – goals and assists. He brings the ability to produce those special moments in Atlanta.”
The 25-year-old Ontario, Canada native featured in 32 matches in Major League Soccer – where he helped D.C. United lift the 2013 Open Cup. In 2013 for D.C., Porter made 18 starts and finished with three goals – tied for best on the team with Dwayne De Rosario and Luis Silva. In 2014, Porter also made two CONCACAF Champions League trips with United – one in Jamaica and one in Panama.
“It certainly helps to have players in your group that have won silverware,” Smith said. “He’s shown that he scores goals and is very effective at every level.”
All three of his MLS goals were equalizers. In 2013, he scored in the 65th minute against Sporting Kansas City, a header in the 84th minute brought United back even against the Los Angeles Galaxy, and finally a 27th minute strike tied a match against the Houston Dynamo.
Before joining United, Porter scored 12 goals for FC Edmonton in 47 appearances. He completed two loan spells – one with Energie Cottbus II in Germany’s lower divisions and in the USL with the Richmond Kickers.
“I think Kyle, over the last couple of seasons, hasn’t had the most consistent string of playing time, with loans and changes in his situation,” Smith said. “He’s had ups and downs; he’s had times he’s been effective but can’t seem to grab the minutes he needs too. I think he just needs the right home to show what he’s capable of, and I think this is the place he will be able to show what he’s capable of. He has so much to offer as he enters what’s sure to be the prime of his career.”