Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Wenger rewarded for versatility with No. 1 pick
by Mike Woitalla, January 12th, 2012 6:01PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

TAGS:  mls, montreal impact


[MLS SUPERDRAFT] Andrew Wenger's parents remember his first goal well, back when he was 5 years old. "He scored at the wrong end," said his mother, Kathy Jo. "But at least he scored," joked his father, Jim, shortly after the Montreal Impact made Wenger the No. 1 pick in the 2012 MLS SuperDraft.

After that inauspicious debut, pretty much all as gone well for Wenger all over the soccer field. The 2011 MAC Hermann Trophy started all 63 games during his three-year career at Duke, scoring 21 goals and 13 assists while playing in the back and up front.

He was the ACC Defensive Player of the Year in 2010 and the conference’s Offensive Player of the Year last season when he finished sixth in the nation among Division I scorers with 17 goals and eight assists.

That Andrew attended his mother’s alma mater, Duke, came about because Coach John Kerr noticed the Pennsylvanian in 2007 playing at the Disney's Soccer Showcase.

"I knew after 5 minutes I wanted to coach him,” said Kerr. “Here was an all-around soccer player who could read the game, had excellent tactical sense, a great athlete, and great technical ability.”

Wenger sharpened his individual skills by playing endless soccer in the backyard -- and in his room.

“He was always in the backyard,” said Kathy Jo. “He was very driven.  We had a rebound net. He spent a lot of time our there. ...

“His bedroom was above the dining room. So when the china and crystal started rattling, we knew he was up there juggling.”

Wenger’s parents say Andrew joined a soccer team at 5 because that’s what all the kids were doing. But as he got older, he became increasingly passionate about soccer.

“He tried all the sports -- baseball, T-ball, basketball -- but there was something special about soccer," said Kathy Jo. “He always kept pushing himself. ...

"When he joined a travel team, he’d tell us where to drive him. All we had to do was get him there.”

Wenger, who turned 21 last Christmas day, opted to skip his final year of college eligibility to sign with MLS as a Generation adidas player. By taking summer courses, he completed his junior year in December. He’ll continue at Duke in the spring semester and then will be just four classes short of a degree.

Kerr says MLS newcomer Montreal made a wise choice, because it can use Wenger up front, in the midfield or on the backline.

Asked where he prefers to play, Wenger smiled and said, “I like to be around the ball.”

  1. David Huff
    commented on: January 13, 2012 at 10:39 a.m.
    Talk about a curve ball, I thought of the Arsenal manager first and that something good had happened for the Gunners team and then had to come back down to earth.
  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: January 13, 2012 at 10:53 a.m.
    Wengner's pedigree reminds me of a NJ player on a travel team who was used as a forward by one coach (3 goals in 10 games); the following year switched to a libero by another coach and blossomed with 9 goals in 11 games from the back. Let's hope the Montreal coaching staff keeps Wenger in a happy mood.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now



Recent Soccer America Daily
Video Pick: Carlos Alberto's wonder goal    
Carlos Alberto, who died at age 72 on Tuesday, scored one of the greatest World Cup ...
Video Pick: Sweet solo strike from Leipzig    
One of the reasons newly promoted RB Leipzig is only two points behind Bundesliga leader Bayern ...
U.S. Abroad: Big night for Americans in DFB Pokal    
Bobby Wood scored two goals for Hamburg, his first since the second week of the Bundesliga ...
Double DUII arrests add to Portland nightmare week    
In the space of a week, the Portland Timbers, the 2015 MLS champions, failed to reach ...
Newcomers debut for U.S. U-17s boys in pair of wins    
In their first games since Coach John Hackworth named the 32-player roster for the fall semester ...
Video Pick: A fowl field invasion    
A duck's crash landing interrupted a Bulgarian league game despite goalkeeper Nikolay Bankov's best efforts to ...
What They're Saying: Political science professor Fabio Wanderley Reis    
"People are not feeling represented and candidates like [Joao Leite and Alexandre Kalil], with very little political ...
USL: Nashville SC hires SUM exec Jeske    
Court Jeske, who spent eight years at MLS and Soccer United Marketing as vice president, international ...
MLS: Brad Davis joins vets who are retiring    
Brad Davis, a six-time MLS all-star and two-time MLS champion, announced Sunday that he will retire ...
NASL Rewind: Rayo OKC surges in playoff race    
With one week left in the NASL regular season, Rayo OKC, the Oklahoma club that in ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives