New Mexico United added another piece to its 2022 roster Wednesday and added some firepower to its attack.
Forward Tabort Etaka Preston, a 23-year-old from Bamenda, Cameroon, became the latest offseason signing for NMU. He spent last season with Hartford Athletic, scoring five goals in 26 appearances. Tabort Ebaka also has played for Las Vegas and San Antonio during his three seasons of USL Championship competition, netting 12 goals in 59 appearances overall.
Tabort Etaka Preston
United coach Zach Prince said he was “very aggressive” in trying to sign Tabort Ebaka.
“I’ve known about him for a long time. He was very dangerous for Las Vegas Lights and then for Hartford,” Prince said. “He’s a player who really likes to get faced-up and go off the dribble and his first steps are really explosive. We felt like it was important to diversify our attack.”
United has also diversified its roster this offseason, thus far adding four players from four countries.
Previously announced signings are Justin Portillo (United States), Carl Sainte (Haiti) and Alexis Souahy (France).
The process is not over yet. Prince said United will announce several more additions and re-signings over the next two weeks. The club is still in the market for one or two more players and has specific targets in mind, but the overall roster is close to completion, Prince said.
“There are a lot of good players out there, but it’s important to find guys who fit our style and our ethos,” he said. “I have spent a lot of time on Zoom calls and talking to people, but fortunately that’s something I really enjoy doing. As an assistant coach, you’re an influencer on player signings, not the decision-maker. Now I’m in a position to make the decisions and I can’t wait to get these players on the field.”
Tabort Etaka represented Cameroon at the U-20 level and played in Albania and the Czech Republic before joining Las Vegas Lights in 2018.
In USLC play he has eight assists and 54 chances created to go with his 12 goals.