U-20 opponents load up on U.S. talent

When the USA begins play at the Concacaf Under-20 Championship in Jamaica, it will go up against a lot of familiar faces. As many as nine of the other 11 teams in the tournament will have players born or bred in the United States or playing for MLS clubs or U.S. college teams.

In Group A ...

GUATEMALA. The 30 players training with the Chapines in December included four based in the USA. Pablo Aguilar (University of Virginia), Nicolas Samayoa (FGCU) and Carlos Barrios (Santiago Canyon College) all play in college, while Andy Ruiz is with the FC Dallas academy team.

JAMAICA. The hosts included four U.S.-bred players when they traveled to Venezuela in December for a pre-tournament training camp. The squad included goalkeeper Nicholas Nelson (Georgia United), defender Ryan Miller (Philadelphia Union Academy) and Luca Levee (Global Premier Soccer) as well as forward Khallil Stewart, who played for Concorde Fire before enrolling at George Washington. D.C. United's Michael Seaton is expected to join Jamaica's U-20s for qualifying.

PANAMA. Francisco Narbon attended Minnesota boarding school Shattuck St. Mary's, which finished second in the  Development Academy under-17/18 age group in 2013. He played for Panama in the 2011 Under-17 World Cup and is set to represent Panama for the second time in U-20 World Cup qualifying. Narbon had a standout freshman season at James Madison in the fall.

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO. Besides four T&T imports attending U.S. colleges -- defender Leland Archer (College of Charleston), midfielders Duane Muckette (USF) and Brendon Creed (Temple) and forward Ricardo John (Virginia Tech) -- Johan Welch is a goalkeeper for the Houston Dynamo's U-17/18 academy team that is first in the Development Academy's Central Conference.

In Group B ...

CANADA. All three MLS Canadian clubs -- Montreal, Toronto FC and Vancouver -- and the NASL's FC Edmonton had first-team players on the U-20 team that took part in training in Florida in mid-December. Also in camp were four players based at U.S. colleges: Nolan Wirth (Oregon State), Quinton Duncan (Tulsa), Christopher Nanco (Syracuse) and Brody Huitema (Duke).

EL SALVADOR. El Salvador has recruited heavily in the Virginia-Maryland area for its U-20 team. Among the candidates for La Selecta are Carlos Canas (D.C. United academy and Longwood University) and Romilio Hernandez (Baltimore Bays and Louisville University) and Ronald Ventura (D.C. United academy). Hernandez played for the U.S. U-18s before playing for El Salvador at the 2013 Under-20 World Cup and Ventura played for the U.S. U-15s in 2010.

HAITI. Five players on Haiti's short list are based at U.S. clubs or high schools. They include Zachary Herivaux, who spent time with the U.S. U-15s, and Alessandro Campoy, who played for the U.S. U-18s as recently as this fall. Herivaux, who was born in Japan, is considered one of the top prospects in the New England Revolution's academy program and spent preseason camp with the MLS club's first team in February. He has verbally committed to NCAA Division I semifinalist Providence. Campoy plays for Weston SC. Virginia-bound Derick Etienne (New York Red Bulls) and Kenny Monford (New York SC) are high school seniors while Jerry Saint Vil is a freshman at Palm Beach Atlantic University.

HONDURAS. Bryan Rochez, who recently signed with Orlando City for its first season in MLS, heads the 20-player squad named by Honduras for the trip to Jamaica.

MEXICO. In 2013, Mexico's goalkeeper at the Concacaf Under-20 Championship was Ricardo Sanchez, then with FC Dallas. This year, another young FC Dallas keeper, Jose Gonzalez, is on the 20-player squad Mexico will take to U-20 World Cup qualifying

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2 comments about "U-20 opponents load up on U.S. talent".
  1. Kamone Lee, December 30, 2014 at 2:50 p.m.

    You left our Michael Seaton of DC United who plays for Jamaica.

  2. Kamone Lee, December 30, 2014 at 2:51 p.m.

    *out

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