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Orlando City B Deepens Squad with Seven Acquisitions

ORLANDO, Fla. – Jan 13, 2016 – Orlando City B significantly strengthened its squad today, announcing seven acquisitions – forwards Pierre da Silva, Dembakwi Yomba, Michael Cox, William Eyang, midfielders Jonathan Mendoza, Marius Obekop and defender Craig Nitti – leading up to the 2016 USL campaign. Eyang and Nitti’s signings are pending clearance of their ITC Visas.

Player transactions are subject to USSF and USL League clearance. Per Club and league rules, additional details were not disclosed.

"We're obviously really excited with all seven additions," said OCB head coach Anthony Pulis. "There's been a lot of hard work behind the scenes to recruit and sign these young players who all have tremendous upside. We can't wait to start preseason and begin preparing for the 2016 season."

Jonathan Mendoza rejoins City after leading the Rochester Rhinos to the 2015 USL Regular Season and Postseason Championships. The 25-year-old Colombian midfielder featured for the Lions for three seasons (2011-2013), becoming one of the second player in Club history to earn promotion from the U-23 side to the first team in 2013 after captaining City’s Premier Development League (PDL) team in 2011 and 2012. Additionally, Mendoza brings plenty of USL experience within the squad, having registered more than 60 appearances in three seasons.

Pierre Da Silva, 17, has been promoted from City’s U-18 U.S. Soccer Development Academy program. The American-born striker of Brazilian and Peruvian descent originally joined the Club from the Residency Program at IMG in Bradenton, Fla., representing the U.S. Men’s National Team (USMNT) at the 2015 FIFA U-17 World Cup and the 2015 U-17 CONCACAF Championship.

Dembakwi Yomba, 19, enters the Club after featuring in Atletico de Madrid’s youth ranks for two seasons, making several league and UEFA Youth League appearances. One of the top-rated class of 2015 high school players in the United States, the athletic and direct attacker has featured for the USMNT U-20 and U-18 sides.

Canadian striker Michael Cox has spent the past two years with Portuguese Segunda Liga squad Atlético CP, Finland’s Premier League team Kuopion Palloseura and North American Soccer League (NASL) side FC Edmonton. The speedy, strong and powerful 23-year-old forward has made more than 60 appearances, scoring 13 goals and adding three assists.

Cameroonian striker William Eyang joins OCB from Swedish team Bodens BK. The 21-year-old forward, who produced a solid goal-scoring record in the Swedish leagues, provides pace and power to the Lions’ front line.

Cameroonian midfielder Marius Obekop signs with OCB after appearing for the New York Red Bulls and the New York Red Bulls II (USL) for the past three years, compiling 28 appearances and six goals for both teams. Prior to that, the athletic and technical 21-year-old winger played 18 games and scored five goals for Renaissance FC de Ngoumou in the Cameroonian top division. On the international stage, Obekop has earned 32 caps for Cameroon’s U-17 and U-20 teams, scoring 16 goals.

Defender Craig Nitti, 23, strengthens City’s backline, having spent the 2015 season with the Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2 (USL), making 18 appearances and scoring one goal. During his collegiate career, the Vancouver Whitecaps’ 2015 MLS SuperDraft fourth-round selection (72nd overall) attended Loyola Marymount University (LMU), receiving All-West Coast Conference First-Team and All-Far West Region Second Team honors. The 6-foot-5 defender was also a member of the Portland Timbers U-23s in the summer of 2013.
 
Transaction: Orlando City B Acquires Pierre da Silva, Dembakwi Yomba, Michael Cox, William Eyang, Jonathan Mendoza, Marius Obekop and Craig Nitti
 
Name: Pierre da Silva
Height: 5’9”
Weight: 145 lbs.
Birth Date: July 28, 1998
Birthplace: Port Chester, New York
Citizenship: United States of America 
Twitter: @PierreDasilva11

Name: Dembakwi Yomba
Height: 5’7”
Weight: 145 lbs.
Birth Date: September 4, 1996
Birthplace: Lithonia, Georgia
Citizenship: United States of America
Twitter:  @Boxi07

Name: Michael Cox
Height: 6’2”
Weight: 190 lbs.
Birth Date: August 2, 1992
Birthplace: Calgary, Canada
Citizenship: Canada

Name: William Eyang
Height: 6’2”
Weight: 172 lbs.
Birth Date: January 27, 1994
Birthplace: Nkoumadjap, Cameroon
Citizenship: Cameroon

Name: Jonathan Mendoza
Height: 5’6”
Weight: 140 lbs.
Birth Date: January 26, 1990
Birthplace: Bogota, Colombia
Citizenship: Colombia

Name: Marius Obekop
Height: 5’10”
Weight: 168 lbs.
Birth Date: December 19, 1994
Birthplace: Yaoundé, Cameroon
Citizenship: Cameroon

Name: Craig Nitti
Height: 6’5”
Weight: 168 lbs.
Birth Date: January 19, 1992
Birthplace: Van Nuys, CA
Citizenship: United States of America
Twitter:  @craig_nitti

 

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