Sign USL D2 All-Star Ishmael Mintah & Federico Bianchi
The Long Island Rough Riders, members of professional soccer's USL 2nd Division, are pleased to announce the signings of midfielder Ishmael Mintah and midfielder Federico Bianchi.
Originally from Ghana, Ishmael Mintah signed with the Rough Riders after winning the 2005 USL D2 Championship with division rival Charlotte Eagles. A team-mate of new Rough Rider Ricardo Ordain, Mintah was also a 2005 USL D2 2nd Team All-League selection. Rough Riders Head Coach Flavio Ferri noted that "Ishmael brings real leadership skills and USL experience. I see him as the new field general for our young team".
Prior to his two seasons in Charlotte, he played at Creighton University where he helped lead the team to the NCAA Division I Finals in 2000. His senior season he scored 3 goals with 10 assists, earning him a number of honors including the MVC All-Tournament Team, 2nd Team All-Conference and the College Cup All-Tournament Team. He had transferred to Creighton from Division-III Wartburg, where he had been named an All-American while playing for his father.
Drafted by the LA Galaxy (MLS) in 2001, he spent that season with the Sioux Falls Spitfire of the PDL. He helped them win the "Heartland Division" and 3rd place overall in the then 45-team Pro Development League. He was named to the USL's postseason "USL Select Team" which traveled to Portugal for 3 friendly matches.
Federico Bianchi, who was born in New York City, joins the Rough Riders for his first professional season after appearing last year with the LA Galaxy (MLS) reserve squad. "He is a very technical player", said Ferri. "He can be dangerous from either side of the field and has a real attacking flair".
Bianchi played collegiately at Boston University, where he had 18 goals and 18 assists in 77 games as a four-year starter. On the field, he was named to the America East All-Conference 2nd Team. In the class room, he was named to the America East Academic Honor Roll while majoring in Business Administration & Management.
Growing up in Pacific Palisades, CA, Federico also earned "Reebok All-American" his senior year while playing for the South ODP State team.
The Rough Riders, with a 20-game regular season, will host 9 games at their home field at Mitchel Athletic Complex in Uniondale, NY. Their 10th home date will be played at Stony Brook University on Wednesday-June 7, 2006. The team will open at home on April 22nd - "Adidas Night" - when they take on the Pittsburgh Riverhounds. For more team and ticket information, please visit the team's website at