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Report: Joya might be headed home
February 2nd, 2014 6:29PM

TAGS:  americans abroad, mexico, mls


[MLS 2014 COUNTDOWN] Benji Joya, one of the top players on the USA's 2013 Under-20 World Cup team, could leave Mexican club Santos, where he is stuck on its sub-20 team, and move to MLS, according to

A source close to the player told's Tom Marshall that Joya was close to joining MLS, contingent on MLS clubs expressing an interest by Monday night that they'd enter a lottery for Joya, who would first come on loan.

Joya, 20, played four games for Santos during the 2012-13 Mexican season, but he has not made a first-team appearance in the Liga MX in 2013-14. He played two games off the bench in the Copa MX, a cup competition in which most first division clubs use reserve players, and otherwise played for Santos in Mexico's sub-20 championship it won in December.

Joya attended Overfelt High School in San Jose, Calif., but chose Santos over college after finishing high school in 2011. He was also torn between staying at home -- where he helped his mother with her janitorial business -- and going to Mexico, where his parents were born.

Another Californian, Daniel Cuevas, left Santos in January to join second division Lobos BUAP. Like Joya, Cuevas played on the U.S. U-20s.

Preseason action ...

The Colorado Rapids came back from a 2-1 deficit to beat the Houston Dynamo, 3-2, in a scrimmage played with three 30-minute periods. Deshorn Brown and Gabriel Torres had the tying and winning goals.

The Rapids, who will train this week in Houston, had taken the lead on a goal by Homegrown midfielder Dillon Serna before Houston went ahead on goals by Tony Cascio, picked up by the Dynamo from Colorado, and Giles Barnes. The Dynamo now heads to Tucson for training.
-- Giuseppe Gentile, picked up in the recent waiver draft of late college signings, scored the lone goal as the Chicago Fire opened its preseason campaign with a 1-0 win over FGCU.

Feb. 2 in Ave Maria, Fla.
Chicago 1 FGCU 0
Feb. 2 in Houston
Houston 2 Colorado 3
Feb. 1 in Tucson, Ariz.
Portland 1 Sporting KC 1
Jan. 31 in Bradenton, Fla.
New England 1 Malmo FF 1
Jan. 29 in Casa Grande, Ariz.
Real Salt Lake 1 RSL AZ 1
Jan. 29 in Houston
Houston 4 Dynamo Academy 0
Jan. 28 in Tucson, Ariz.
Sporting KC 1 DC Tucson 0

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