ACQUIRED: Traded from Sporting Kansas City on 1/28/2019
Opara came to Minnesota in early 2019 via a trade with Sporting Kansas City. He joins the Loons after six seasons with Sporting Kansas City. The defender joined Kansas City in 2013. Throughout his six seasons with Kansas City, Opara started 100 games, logging 9,098 minutes, with five assists and 12 goals. During the 2017 season, Opara was named to MLS Best XI, and was awarded the 2017 Defender of the Year. He made 30 starts while anchoring a defense that conceded just 29 goals during the 2017 regular season, eight fewer than any other team. In 2018, he followed up with another successful campaign, making 31 starts, playing 2,773 minutes, contributing to 11 shutouts with three goals and two assists.
Prior to joining Sporting Kansas City, the defender began his professional career with the San Jose Earthquakes when he was drafted 3rd overall in the 2010 MLS SuperDraft as a Generation adidas signing. During his three seasons with the Quakes, Opara played in 35 games, notching 2,162 minutes with five assists and three goals.
INTERNATIONAL: Opara represented the United States at the 2009 FIFA U20 World Cup and at the U-3 level during the 2012 CONCACAF Men’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament. He then made his senior international debut in January 2018, anchoring the U.S. backline in a shutout effort against Bosnia and Herzegovina.