The club acquired defender and Canadian international Alistair Johnston from Nashville SC in return for $750,000 in General Allocation Money in 2022 and $250,000 in General Allocation Money in 2023. Nashville SC could receive an additional 10% in transfer fee over the initial amount paid of $1M. Johnston also signed a new two-season deal with the Club, including two option years in 2024 and 2025.
Born in Vancouver, Johnston’s family moved to Montreal when he was four years old during which time he played for the Lakeshore Soccer Club. The family subsequently moved to Aurora, Ontario, when Johnston was seven. From 2015 to 2019, he played 17 matches, including 15 starts, with League1 Ontario’s Vaughan SC. During this period, he also represented NCAA’s St. John's University (2016-2017), and Wake Forest University (2018-2019), before being drafted by Nashville SC with the 11th overall pick of the 2020 MLS SuperDraft.
In two seasons with Nashville, the 23-year-old played 44 games, earning 39 starts and 3,510 minutes of game time. He also collected one goal and two assists. In 2021, Johnston was part of a defensive unit that conceded just 33 goals and registered 13 shutouts, tied for first in MLS. Johnston also featured in five playoff matches, all starts, and totaled 525 minutes of play, helping the Tennessee club reach the Eastern Conference semifinals twice.
Johnston received his first senior call-up with the Canadian men’s national team on March 23, 2021. He saw the pitch for the first time in a 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier against Bermuda on March 25. He scored his first international goal and assist in the following qualifier against the Cayman Islands on March 29, 2021. He has 13 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying matches under his belt, including 11 starts. Johnston also earned five starts in as many games for Canada last summer in the 2021 Gold Cup.