Thomas Meilleur-Giguere made 31 regular-season appearances for Ottawa Fury FC a season ago, and returns this year on loan from the Montreal Impact. | Photo courtesy John Wilkinson III / Nashville SC
OTTAWA – Ottawa Fury FC announced on Friday the return to the club of Canadian defender Thomas Meilleur-Giguère on loan from Major League Soccer’s Montreal Impact as the clubs renewed their partnership for the 2019 season, and the signing of former Impact Academy standout Luca Ricci to his first professional contract.
Meilleur-Giguère made 31 appearances for Fury FC in the 2018 USL Championship season, including 26 starts, as part of an Ottawa defense that helped goalkeeper Maxime Crepeau set a new individual single-season record with 15 shutouts in the regular season. The 21-year-old recorded 2,944 minutes of action across all competitions, quickly establishing himself as a reliable and determined player. Meilleur-Giguère’s performance throughout the year earned him the 2018 Fury FC Young Player of the Year Award.
A Montreal-native, Ricci spent three years with the Academy before spending part of the 2018 USL Championship season on loan with Phoenix Rising FC, where he played alongside Ivory Coast legend Didier Drogba as he made four appearances for the 2018 USL Championship Western Conference champion.
“We’re pleased to see Thomas return to Ottawa this season, and to have the opportunity to bring in Luca,” said Fury FC General Manager Julian de Guzman. “The signing of Luca is in line with our mission of developing young talented players. Like others who have already been able to take the next step in their development (Adonijah Reid, Daniel Kinumbe, Clement Bayiha, David Paulmin), we hope that Luca can grow in our environment, to the long-term benefit of Fury FC. We’ll give him the time and opportunity to develop here.”