U.S. U-15 boys take seven FC Dallas academy players to UEFA tournament

The U.S. U-15 boys national team is in Poland for a UEFA Development Tournament that begins Monday against Iceland.

The U-15s took seven players from the FC Dallas academy that recently won the FC Bayern adidas Campus Cup, beating Dinamo Zagreb, 3-0, in the semifinals and host Bayern Munich in a shootout in the final after it rallied to tie the game, 2-2.

The squad -- all players were born in 2005 -- also includes Francis Jacobs, who recently signed a pro contract with Orange County SC.

The USA will also face Poland on Wednesday and Russia on Friday. PA Classics academy director Steve Klein will coach the U-15s, who attended this summer's U-14 YNT National Talent Identification Camp.

U.S. U-15 Roster:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Victor Gomez (FC Dallas), Emmanuel Ochoa (San Jose Earthquakes).
DEFENDERS (6): Edwin Avalos (Morelia/MEX), Nati Clarke (Sporting KC), Pranav DuBroff (FC Dallas), Joshua Hardin (Seattle Sounders FC), Angel Martinez (Seattle Sounders FC), Nolan Norris (FC Dallas).
MIDFIELDERS (6): Julio Benitez (Real Salt Lake AZ), Robert Deziel (Celta Vigo/ESP), Diego Hernandez (FC Dallas), Francis Jacobs (Orange County SC), Jordan Jones (FC Dallas), Sergio Oregel (Chicago Fire).
FORWARDS (6): Gage Akalu (Sporting Kansas City), Reed Baker-Whiting (Seattle Sounders FC), Italo Jenkins (Atlanta United FC), Kevin Kelley (FC Dallas), Anthony Ramirez (FC Dallas), Robert Willcot (LAFC)

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6 comments about "U.S. U-15 boys take seven FC Dallas academy players to UEFA tournament".
  1. Bob Ashpole, October 19, 2019 at 6:50 a.m.

    Seven players from one MLS club team? Only 1 player from a non-MLS US club? That is a horrible indication about the current state of our program.

    Not talking about the players. MLS club players make up only a small minority of DA players. What are the odds that 7 of the top prospects in any age category are found on one club? 

    The suspicion is that the selections were made to maximize US chances of winning U15 matches rather than based on individual talent. 

  2. Ginger Peeler, October 19, 2019 at 8:36 a.m.

    7 players from one club plus 3 from another...Seattle Sounders FC. Almost your whole team right there. It just feels wrong. 

  3. Ric Fonseca replied, October 19, 2019 at 1:31 p.m.

    Ginger & Bob, having read this, it tells me that for some reason or other, the player selectors/those who ID players, weren't just too interested in actually beating the bushes, i.e. going out into the "real soccer playing worlds" or just plain lazy and felt it easier to collect those players available.  It also gives credence to the hue and cry that US soccer guys are just not willing or capable of identifying a potential player from some youth league, club, etc., and then those not selected turn around and say, "see they're not really looking for us," while the Hugo Perez's of other national teams - read the Mexican National Federation - has paid HP the bucks to ID players to recruit.  And while sounding like a broken records, everyone cries crocodile tears, and says, "see I told you that we shoulda signed Julio, Robert or Juanito to our team...!  Lastly, it is so obvious that these kids have been able - read this, their parents - to put out the necessary "tool$" for the pay for play, and then get "$elected!"

  4. Hat Trick, October 19, 2019 at 4:35 p.m.

    7 players from one club.  Saved a lot of expense money.  Just so they are the best seven at that position at that age of all kids playing soccer in the United States.  Which I am sure they are.  

  5. Sean Guillory, October 21, 2019 at 6:41 a.m.

    FC Dallas proves times and time again that they develop the best young players at their Academy and proves it through the amount of professionals that have risen from their ranks. Nine seems like a lot but when you produce the best player players year after year it usually fits.

  6. Bob Ashpole replied, October 21, 2019 at 12:41 p.m.

    "If you ask [Luichi] Gonzalez, the North Texas region is among the top five in the USA when it comes to local youth soccer talent, behind only Southern California, Northern California, and New York...."

    He said that in 2016 before he became the head coach.

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