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Atlanta United sign former USL Goalkeeper of the Year

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An interesting move.

MLS: U.S. Open Cup-Chicago Fire at FC Cincinnati Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Atlanta United announced on Friday that they’ve signed goalkeeper Mitch Hildebrandt formerly of Cincinnati FC. The 29-year-old shotstopper becomes the first new acquisition of the offseason for the Five Stripes and gives the club some options as far as who will serve as back-up to presumed starter, Brad Guzan.

“Over the last two years, Mitch has done very well at the USL level and he has earned an opportunity to play in MLS,” said Atlanta United Vice President and Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra. “We are pleased to add him to our roster and confident in his ability to add to the overall quality of our goalkeeper contingent.”

Hildebrandt won the 2016 USL Goalkeeper of the Year award with 10 clean sheets. In 2017, he helped Cincinnati to a remarkable run to the U.S. Open Cup semifinals. He also led the USL in total saves for the season.

It’s unclear where in the pecking order this leaves Georgia native Alec Kann, who served as starter for the first half of the inaugural season. With the team beginning a USL team, it could be him or Hildebrandt who is the starter there with the other acting as back-up for the MLS team.