John Alvbage - Minnesota United FC
Courtesy of Minnesota United FC

Minnesota United FC sign veteran Swedish goalkeeper John Alvbage

Minnesota United announced the acquisition of Swedish goalkeeper John Alvbage on loan from IFK Goteborg on Sunday, pending receipt of his P-1 Visa and international transfer certificate.

A Swedish international with four caps who was a member of his country's 2006 World Cup squad, Alvbage, 34, has nearly two decades of experience in the Swedish and Danish leagues. He arrives in Minnesota on loan through July 15, with an option to extend the deal beyond that date.

“We are delighted to get John here in Minnesota, he has a wealth of experience around the world. He is a hard worker, he has great character and he is a loyal guy who will fit in well in Minnesota,” MNUFC goalkeeper coach Marius Rovde said in a club release. “A goalkeeper is like an extra coach on the field and when you get someone with the experience of Alvbage, it’s a great moment for the club.”

The veteran 'keeper was named 2015 Goalkeeper of the Year in the Allsvenkan, Sweden's top division, and notched 53 clean sheets in his just-completed five-year stint with Goteborg, helping the club win two Svenska Cupen (Swedish Cup) titles and qualify for European competition in four straight seasons. He also served time at Torslanda IK, Vasta Forlunda IF, Orebro SK and Denmark's Viborg FF.

“I have big expectations, this is a great opportunity for myself and everyone at this club, it’s new for all of us and that’s really exciting,” said Alvbage. “There is great team spirit and chemistry already building with this club and I’m delighted to be a part of it. I’m pumped, I am excited about what we can create in Minnesota.”

Alvbage is the third 'keeper signed by Minnesota for this season, alongside Alec Ferrell and Patrick McLain. He and the Loons make their MLS debut in the league's 2017 season opener at Portland on March 3, then play their first home match on March 12 vs. fellow expansion side Atlanta United FC.  

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