The Minnesota United padded their midfield depth Monday, announcing the signing of Brazilian midfielder Ibson to a three-year deal.

Ibson, 31, becomes the ninth midfielder on the team, days after the club signed Ghanian Kalif Alhassan.

United coach Manny Lago said Ibson “has made a big impression globally’’ and that signing him continues to show “Minnesota soccer fans and also everybody involved in our club that we are trying to have a vision to grow and be a bigger part of the global game.”

The midfielder has spent time playing professionally in Europe and his native Brazil, at one point playing in the UEFA Champions League with FC Porto.

Ibson has been transitioning into a more defensive midfielder role.

“He’s got an ability to play box to box on a soccer field,” Lagos said. “He’ll contribute a lot defensively, positionally in the middle of the field … and then he certainly is someone that can get forward in gaps in the attack.”

He most recently played in Brazil, competing for Santos FC, Corinthians and CR Flamengo.
Minnesota United will begin its spring season in April.

BETSY HELFAND