Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Zavaleta could follow father and uncle to backline
by Paul Kennedy, January 9th, 2013 1:07AM

MOST READ
TAGS:  college men, mls

MOST COMMENTED

[THIRTEEN FOR '13] Indiana University sophomore Eriq Zavaleta was signed by MLS Monday as the fifth underclassman to join the 2013 Generation adidas class. He led the Hoosiers' attack in their march to the 2012 NCAA title, but he is projected to play as a defender in the pros. That would only be natural. His father, El Salvador-born Carlos, spent four years as a defender in the indoor MISL, and his uncle, Greg Vanney, was a standout defender in MLS and France.

THIRTEEN FOR '13:
11. Eriq Zavaleta (Indiana-signed to Generation adidas contract)
Follow @_AIR_RIQ_
10. Jason Johnson (VCU-signed to Generation adidas contract)
9. Gyasi Zardes (CSU Bakersfield-signed with Los Angeles Galaxy)
8. Walker Zimmerman (Furman-signed to Generation adidas contract)
Follow @thewalkerzim
7. Gale Agbossoumonde (Carolina RailHawks-signed with Toronto FC)
Follow @galecuse17
6. Oscar Sorto (Los Angeles Galaxy U-17/18s-signed with Los Angeles Galaxy)
Follow @oscaritosorto13
5. Mikey Lopez (North Carolina-signed to Generation adidas contract)
Follow @MLopez5tarheel
4. Amando Moreno (New York Red Bulls U-17/18s-signed with New York Red Bulls)
Follow @Amando_moreno
3. Andrew Farrell (Louisville-signed to Generation adidas contract)
Follow @louisville5
2. Ashton Bennett (Coastal Carolina)
1. Wil Trapp (Akron-signed with Columbus Crew)
Follow @wil_trapp



The 6-foot-1 Zavaleta has experience playing in the back. As a freshman at Westfield (Ind.) High School in 2007, he had 25 goals and nine assists. But he was converted to defense when he entered the U.S. U-17 residency program in Florida and played three games on the U.S. backline at the 2009 Under-17 World Cup. He liked the experience.

“Soccer is very physical," he told the Hamilton County Sports Daily after his return from the Under-17 World Cup in Nigeria. "A lot of people underestimate how tough it really is. Scores are low because of great defense. It’s a very demanding sport, but I love it. I can’t get enough of it.’’

After the 2009 Under-17 World Cup, Zavaleta returned to Westfield, where his father operates the Indiana Soccer Academy, but also followed Vanney as he moved from Real Salt Lake to Chivas USA.

Zavaleta played in the RLS AZ academy program and spent part of the 2011 MLS preseason with Chivas USA. Later in the year, he helped lead the Columbus Crew Jrs. to the 2011 USL Super-20 championship. (None of the stints was long enough to qualify him for homegrown status -- and the one that would have counted if they were would have been his last.)

Zavaleta was moved back to the frontline as a freshman at Indiana, which needed help up front. Zavaleta provided it with 10 goals as a freshman and 18 as a sophomore to finish tied for third in the country. His header set up the winning goal in the Men's College Cup final against Georgetown.

He is the third Hoosier in the last five years to sign a Generation adidas contract, joining Kevin Alston (2008-New England Revolution) and Will Bruin (2010-Houston Dynamo).



No comments yet.

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




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
MLS Trade Central: Friday's deals    
After two disastrous years in England, Brek Shea is back in MLS, signing with expansion club ...
MLS lines up exciting tripleheader for first Sunday    
MLS will open its 2015 season on March 6 when the defending champion LA Galaxy hosts ...
Video Pick: Alex Meier on Fire     
The leading scorer in the Europe's highest scoring league is a player you may not have ...
What They're Saying: Chris Wondolowski    
"I'm not over it. I'm not sure I'll ever get over it. [Pause] I actually think ...
U.S. U-20s win at San Pedro Sula    
San Pedro Sula is no easy place to play as the USA (2-1 loser in the ...
Press and Lloyd combine for all seven in U.S. win    
After a tie and loss in its first two games at the Torneio Internacional da Brasilia, ...
What They're Saying: Juergen Klopp    
"He took a wrong turn at some point. But everything is back to normal now. He ...
TV Report: MLS expansion teams ink local deals    
As expected, New York City FC has entered into a multi-year agreement with YES Network, while ...
Timbers land Wake's Vidovich to run T2    
The Portland Timbers, who dipped into the college ranks to get head coach Caleb Porter, have ...
Veterans in demand as Re-Entry Draft concludes    
Stage 2 of the 2014 MLS Re-Entry Draft offered up fair doses of everything, as did ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives