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Jimmy McLaughlin returning to USL Championship with Louisville City in 2021

McLaughlin is heading back to the USL Championship for 2021, where he will play for his former Union head coach

New York Red Bulls v Cincinnati FC: Semifinal - 2017 U.S. Open Cup Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Former Philadelphia Union homegrown Jimmy McLaughlin is joining Louisville City next season, where he will be reunited with former Union head coach John Hackworth and a number of other familiar faces.

The 27-year-old from Malvern, Pa. joins a Louisville City team that includes former Union players Antoine Hoppenot and Corben Bone. Former teammate Danny Cruz is the club’s technical director and an assistant coach.

“This is an important signing for us,” Hackworth said in a news release. “In Jimmy, we have added a dangerous attacking player with a wealth of professional experience. Unfortunately for him, his last two seasons in MLS have been challenging due to injuries. However, we are confident that he is back to 100% from a physical perspective and is super motivated from a mental perspective.”

An FC Cincinnati original, McLaughlin missed all of the team’s first season in MLS with an ACL injury and after fighting his way into a roster spot for 2020 ended up making just one appearance in their finale at Nippert Stadium after battle an ankle injury.

“I’m coming in with a chip on my shoulder and a lot to prove,” McLaughlin said in a news release. “I’m ready to go. The last few years were just an unfortunate situation, but I’m ready feeling really good. I’ll do whatever I can to help the team, and I’m out to prove that I’m still a very good player.”

McLaughlin was a stand out in his youth at FC Delco and after a season of college soccer at Colgate University signed as the Union’s second homegrown player. Minutes were hard to come by though — he made just three first team appearances in four seasons — but did prove he could play at the USL level with 8 goals in 50 appearances while on loan with the Harrisburg City Islanders.

He made his MLS debut in October 2012, replacing Cruz.

“We’ve known Jimmy for quite some time and understand exactly what we are getting both on and off the field,” Cruz said in a news release. “Jimmy is a dynamic winger who can play on both sides of the field and loves the challenge of taking players on in the final third.”