Romain Metanire, age 29
Ht./wt.: 5-10, 160 pounds
Birthplace: Metz, France
Family: wife Aude; daughter Lylia, 2; son Isayah, 2 weeks.
Soccer history: Began playing at age 6. Turned pro with his hometown FC Metz on the reserve team when he was 18, in October 2008. Promoted in 2010, played 145 league games in eight seasons. Played 18 games with a Belgian club in 2016 before he returned to France to play for Ligue 2’s Stade Reims in 2017. Called up to the Madagascar national team — his grandmother is Malagasy — in 2018. Signed with Minnesota United Jan. 25, 2019. Made MLS debut March 2 at Vancouver, provided first assist March 16 at L.A. Galaxy and first goal May 25 that beat Houston 1-0.
On Metanire: “One reason he’s such a good defender is he’s strong. His legs are strong. He’s able to sink down into a base and hold off defenders.” – United player personnel director Amos Magee.
He said it: Asked if United coach Adrian Heath ever yells at him for pushing forward in the attack too much and too far, Metanire said: “Adrian is confident when I do. Otherwise, he’d tell me not to do it.”
Did you know? Magee negotiated Metanire’s transfer with his Stade Reims club, explaining MLS’ complex salary rules all in French. “It’s OK,” Magee said when asked about his French. “The accent is pretty good. The vocabulary, not so much.”