New York City FC added a key piece to their midfield on Wednesday, announcing the signing of Finland international Alexander Ring. The club used Targeted Allocation Money to acquire the 25-year-old from German second-division club Kaiserslautern.
“At 25, Alexander is a player entering his peak years who has played at a high level over a number of seasons,” NYCFC head coach Patrick Vieira said in a statement released by the club. “He’s a midfielder who can contribute on both sides of the game, both defensively and offensively and he gives us another great option either at the base of midfield or box-to-box.
“Alexander has a good engine and is a competitive player which should suit Major League Soccer.
Born in Helsinki, Ring developed his career in Germany in the youth academies at VFL Lannesdorf and Bayer Leverkusen, as well as at Anderlecht in Belgium and HJK Helsinki in Finland. The midfielder made his senior debut at Klubi-04 before signing a full professional contract at the age of 19 at Helsinki in 2010.
After spending a year-long spell at Bundesliga club Borussia Monchengladbach, Ring was signed by FC Kaiserslautern, where's he played over 70 games since 2013. He's made 10 appearances for the side in 2. Bundesliga action this season.
“As soon as I heard of the interest I was intrigued because I know how big the club is and how well-supported the team is,” Ring said in the statement. “It took a long time to get it done but as soon as I knew about the New York option it was clear for me that I wanted to do it. I had to fight for it hard but I’m so happy."
Ring has 42 caps for Finland since making his debut in June 2011 against Sweden and cemented himself as a regular in the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign.