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Johnny Menyongar is NSC Minnesota Stars First Signing

2010 February 12
by Brian Quarstad

Johnny Menyongar - Photo by Brian Quarstad

The NSC Stars announced today the signing of Johnny Menyongar as the first player for the new soccer franchise. Menyongar, a Liberian native and resident of the Twin Cities is no stranger to Minnesota soccer fans. Menyongar played for the Minnesota Thunder from 2000-2005 and was a fan favorite being nicknamed the “Tiny Ticket”. He was known for his close control of the ball and turning innocuous situations into goals.

In Menyongar’s time with the Thunder he scored 56 goals in 188 appearances. He was also a big contributor to the Thunder’s Lamar Hunt US Open Cup run in 2005 where he scored 5 goals in the competition, three of them coming in an away win against the Kansas City Wizards.

Menyongar has played for the Rochester Rhinos the last 4 seasons and scored 28 goals in 106 appearances. He was also named the team’s MVP in 2008 and 2009. One of the most effective offensive players in the league, Menyongar finished 2nd  in goal scoring and 4th in points in the USL last season. If not for a season-ending ACL injury late in the season, he most likely would have been USL MVP.

Menyongar with coach Manny Lagos

“Simply put, Johnny is a special player,” said head coach Manny Lagos. “When you combine his Minnesota ties with the experience and leadership that he will bring to the team, it makes me absolutely ecstatic that Johnny is the first signing for NSC Minnesota.”

The signing of Menyongar to a 1-year contract is a good one to start the team off. It gives the team a veteran of Division II soccer and adds excitement to the team. Something the former Thunder team had missed since losing Stephen Deroux to Montreal last season.

Menyongar has been working hard at his rehab from his ACL replacement surgery and according to his agent he will be ready to play come the opener on April 10th.

Johnny Menyongar interview

16 Responses
  1. Jeff Wolter permalink
    February 12, 2010


    Good first pick.

  2. nathan3e permalink
    February 12, 2010

    Agrred. Very good.

  3. Neal aka Lightning Striker permalink
    February 12, 2010

    Welcome back, Tiny Ticket.

  4. Trevor permalink
    February 12, 2010

    Is that the jersey? I thought there was a contest. Maybe the just wanted to hold something up for the picture.

    And they’ve gotta stop this Friday announcement stuff. It’s amateur, and it’s going to add to the commonly held belief (especially in the press) that DII soccer is amateur.

  5. February 12, 2010

    Don’t worry about the jersey. St. Louis did the same thing with the Ralston signing. I’m sure that is one of Johnny’s old Thunder jerseys. That was his number for the Thunder.

    I have plenty of stats that clearly show Friday to be a bad press release day. It’s a pretty widely discussed topic amongst soccer website owners. In general, Fridays suck for us for numbers. Monday is by far the best day of the week. Nowadays even more with online media. People have a tendency to detach from their computers and start planning for the weekends on Fridays and the discussions and excitement goes with them. Weekends are ALWAYS the lowest with Saturday often worse than Sundays. But this is social media nerd talk. Lets get back to talking soccer.

  6. February 12, 2010

    Great signing.

  7. xxLAMPS8xx permalink
    February 12, 2010

    Looks good! We could use some electricity from our front half.

  8. Paul Walker permalink
    February 12, 2010

    He is one of the best players in USL. The Rhinos continue to make bad decisions with players but great for us. Welcome home Johnny

  9. February 12, 2010

    Great guy, great player. Will be fun to watch here at home…

  10. nathan3e permalink
    February 13, 2010

    If anyone from NSC is reading this, please sign Matthew Mbuta. Thank you.

  11. February 13, 2010


    Do you want expound? I know very little about him. Why would he be a fit here and why would he be a good pick?

    He played Division III last year with CP Baltimore and the Red Bulls waived him.

  12. nathan3e permalink
    February 13, 2010

    New York actually acquired him in September 2008 from CP Baltimore, they loaned him back for awhile last year. He is very, very fast but limited. Limited like Sanchez is limited. Being with New York last year during the Osorio/Agoos cluster was not going to do anyone any favors and I am guessing that the new regime there has other plans. He is exactly the type of player who can excel in D2 instead of being a late game sub in MLS.

  13. February 13, 2010

    Thanks for your insight. Sounds as if someone will take a gamble on him.

  14. Zlatan permalink
    February 13, 2010

    Any reports on how JM’s rehab is going? As of several weeks back, I had not heard anything positive.

  15. February 13, 2010

    Please go back and read the last sentence in the article. Also, listen to the video.

  16. Scott Kerssen permalink
    February 14, 2010

    Just to clean up a bit of trivia, Manny and Johnny are holding up the 2005 jersey, Johnny’s last year with the team. And if you look closely at the left sleeve, you’ll see it’s either a game worn or game prepared USL-1 jersey.

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