SAFC held their first training session on Thursday morning and following that the club announced two more signings. Shawn Chin and Sebastien Thuriere have joined the club for 2016, bringing more attack to the side.
Chin will be familiar to San Antonio soccer fans as he has been a regular opponent at Toyota Field over recent years. Firstly with Minnesota, but also with theFort Lauderdale side which made the 2014 Soccerbowl, losing to the Scorpions.
A phenomenally experienced striker, Chin comes to San Antonio after an impressive stint in Fort Lauderdale. Chin managed three goals and eight assists through his 53 matches for the NASL club, impressing as he acted more as the second striker, playing team-mates in and drawing the attention of the defense.
Something of a journeyman through his career San Antonio presents Chin with the chance to be part of a something completely new. In addition it gives Chin some stability, which has not always been the case with his prior clubs, with VSI Tampa Bay folding.
Thuriere comes to San Antonio from fellow USL club, Charleston Battery and previously played with Chin at VSI Tampa Bay. 2015 was not as significant to Thuriere as he only made nine starting appearances for Charleston, regularly coming off the bench to make an impact.
With that in mind Thuriere comes to San Antonio hoping to become much more of a key part of a club side, which he has been missing. Thuriere was let go from Charleston in the offseason and spent the early part of 2016 in Norway on trial with SK Brann, which did not eventuate in to a permanent contract, seeing him move to San Antonio.
Despite not seeing much starting time at Charleston, Thuriere has established himself as a key part of the Haitian National Team. That saw Thuriere play in the Gold Cup where Haiti managed an impressive quarter-final performance, before qualifying for the Copa America in 2016 with a win over Trinidad and Tobago which Thuriere came in as a substitute for the win.
That puts Thuriere’s status at San Antonio in some doubt, as he will miss at least some chunk of the season while away at the Copa Centenario. Thuriere will have to establish himself as a regular starter before June, or he could find himself on the outer when he returns.