Former New York Red Bull defender Tyler Ruthven is going overseas to continue his playing career.
Swedish second division side IK Brage reports Ruthven will take part in training with the team’s U-21 side in an attempt to acclimate and lure the defender to Europe.
“Tyler will stay with us for a longer period during spring training with the first team and play matches with our U21 team,” said IK Sporting Director Michael Cold Brook tells the site. “He may also be tested on any of the A-team’s remaining friendlies. If we would feel a need to use the Tyler in our A-team, there is obviously the possibility.
“The reason we decided to pick him up for our U-21 team is because we wanted to give him some time in Swedish football, to see how he adapts, but also to give him the opportunity to get a feel for us,” continues Cold Brook. “Then it fits well for us with such an arrangement because we still await the injury situation of some of our defensive players.”
Ruthven, 24, is best known for being the anchor for the Red Bulls during their franchise record tying five game winning streak last season. After being cut at season’s end, the young Georgia native was given a second opportunity to re-claim his spot during preseason training.
There, Ruthven excelled. His play in the back earned him an offer by the team which was quickly rescinded due to a miscalculation in their cap and roster numbers. The late preseason cut made options to join other MLS teams nearly impossible for the defender, who cast his eyes towards Europe for opportunities. That is when Brage became an option.
Brage reached out to former Red Bulls boss Hans Backe who gave Ruthven a glowing review. “Tyler is a dedicated, hard working and tough central defender,” he said. “He has that typical American winning attitude and a passion for their sport. He wants to develop and improve, always works hard on training. He made some really good games for us in the U.S. last fall.
“It could be a difference to get from New York to a medium-sized Swedish city of Borlänge,” Backe explained. “For him, however, football is the most important thing and he sees this as a chance to prove himself and make a good result for Brage.”