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State pro notes: Milwaukee's Banks signs with Jacksonville Armada

01/25/2017, 9:45pm CST
J.C. Banks

J.C. Banks (Milwaukee Riverside/UW-Green Bay) will remain in the North American Soccer League this season, as the midfielder signed with the Jacksonville Armada.

The 27-year-old spent the past two seasons with Minnesota United, recording four goals and three assists in 43 appearances (17 starts) in NASL play. The Loons are an expansion team in Major League Soccer this season.

Banks joined Minnesota United after four seasons with the Rochester Rhinos; he was a first-team, All-USL PRO selection in 2012 and a second-team pick in 2014 and had 17 goals and 17 assists in 89 league matches.

Jacksonville struggled last year in its second season, going 6-14-12 overall and finishing 11th out of the NASL's 12 teams in the combined standings. In addition to Banks, the Armada signed midfielder Bryam Rebellón on Wednesday.

"J.C. and Bryam are two exciting additions to our roster," Jacksonville coach Mark Lowry said in a news release. "Both players can play a variety of positions throughout midfield. They are both what I would call an 'Armada-type' player: Technically gifted, intelligent players who are very hard working."

On Twitter: @jcbanks11

  • Khaled El-Ahmad (UW-Milwaukee) played a key role for New York City FC at the Major League Soccer SuperDraft earlier this month. El-Ahmad, who has served as a coach and scout for Swedish clubs Djurgården IF, Linköping FC and IK Sirius, is now the North America and CONCACAF scouting manager for City Football Group – the holding company that owns four clubs, including NYCFC and Premier League power Manchester City. "I'm really pleased because in the last three days we had a clear plan about the players we wanted to pick – players who could play the way we want to play," said Patrick Vieira, the former Arsenal and France star midfielder who is in his second season as NYCFC manager. “It wasn’t easy at all to bring in these players, but I have to say that David (Lee), Claudio (Reyna) and Khaled did a great job to allow me to have the players I wanted to work with – all credit to them, because they made it happen and they've been really smart with these moves." El-Ahmad, who was born in Lebanon and primarily raised in Sweeden, also was an assistant coach for the Marquette men's team in 2006 and '07.

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