As the MLS preseason wraps up, clubs around the league are finalizing their rosters ahead of the league’s March 1 compliance date deadline.
Atlanta United internationals Kenwyne Jones (Trinidad & Tobago) and Chris McCann (Ireland) have finalized paperwork to acquire U.S Permanent Resident Cards (Green Cards), which means they will no longer count as international players according to MLS rules.
After signing with the expansion club in July of last year, both Jones and McCann spent the remainder of 2016 on loan; Jones with Central FC in his homeland of Trinidad & Tobago and McCann with Coventry City of League One (England’s third division). The theory behind inking international players early on is to not only secure their signature, but to also get a proactive start on the immigration process. In Atlanta’s case, this was in order to have everything cleared by the start of the 2017 season.
The 32-year-old Jones brings a plethora of professional experience and a distinguished goal-scoring history to Atlanta. With over 100 tallies to his name across all competitions at the club and international levels, the towering Trinidad & Tobago forward hopes to continue that form and be a looming presence for the opposition
McCann arrives in Atlanta with over 350 professional appearances in England including stints with Burnley and Wigan Athletic, primarily in the League Championship. The Irish midfielder provides a versatile, box-to-box option for Tata Martino’s side and will look to be one of the leaders and mentors on a roster full of young talent.
Both McCann and Jones have officially received their U.S. Permanent Resident Cards and will be back for training this week as the club prepares to compete in its first-ever match and home opener of its inaugural MLS season on Sunday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m. ET against New York Red Bull. You can purchase tickets to the historic match here.