The Harrisburg City Islanders announced they were receiving four players on loan from the Philadelphia Union through the end of the 2015 USL season. Eric Ayuk, Jimmy McLaughlin, Raymond Lee, and Eric Bird will all head west on I-76 to the capital, where they'll
remain until at least September play against Saint Louis FC according to an updated press release.
Ayuk is a bit of a shock, as the young Cameroonian forward had become a go-to bench option and spot starter for Jim Curtin and the Union. Picked up in March after a successful trial with the Union, Ayuk has played in thirteen matches this season - starting in five - and had a goal and an assist. He may be best known however for his acrobatic goal celebrations:
McLaughlin is returning to Harrisburg, having spent portions of the previous three seasons with the City Islanders. At 22, McLaughlin has played in just three MLS matches since being signed in 2012 via the Homegrown Player mechanism, getting only nineteen total minutes of action. In Harrisburg though, McLaughlin was instrumental in leading the City Islanders to the USL Championship Final last season. He's amassed eleven goals and three assists over his three seasons with Harrisburg.
Lee was a fourth-round draft pick from Saint Louis University, selected by the Union 71st over in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft. He made one appearance this season, playing twelve minutes against Sporting Kansas City, where he was beaten by Krisztian Nemeth on the game winning goal (fast forward to the 3:00 mark to see the Union go from up 2-1 to losing 3-2).
Bird is a second-round draft pick from the University of Virginia, selected by the Union 41st overall this past January. He did not feature in any MLS matches.
Harrisburg's original press release stated the quartet was headed there until the end of the USL season, however was changed to "just for tonight's match against St. Louis FC" after this story originally published. It's never our intention to mislead our readers, and we apologize for any confusion due to the original verbiage of the article.