U17 MNT roster revealed for Nike Friendlies
U.S. U-17 Men's National Team head coach John Hackworth has named a final 20-player roster for the 2017 Nike International Friendlies, which run from Nov. 29-Dec. 3 at Premier Sports Complex in Lakewood Ranch, Florida.
After a preparatory training camp, Hackworth narrowed his preliminary squad down from 24 players, releasing D.C. United goalkeeper Khamari Culcleasure, Sporting Kansas City defender Mitchell Eise, Shattuck-Saint Mary's goalkeeper JT Harms and Atlanta United FC forward Daniel Mangarov, who will now feature for their respective clubs during the 2017 U.S. Soccer Boys' Development Academy Winter Showcase, which runs concurrently from Nov. 30-Dec. 4 at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Fla.
DEFENDERS (6): Axel Alejandre (FC United Soccer Club; Chicago, Ill.), Sebastian Anderson (Colorado Rapids; Highlands Ranch, Co.), George Bello (Atlanta United FC; Douglasville, Ga.), Mason Judge (Chargers Soccer Club; Tampa, Fla.), Kenny Nielsen (Pateadores; Irvine, Calif.), Joseph Scally (New York City FC; Lake Grove, N.Y.)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Joshua Atencio (Seattle Sounders FC; Bellevue, Wash.), Gianluca Busio (Sporting Kansas City; Greenboro, NC), Adam Saldana (Real So Cal; Panorama City, Calif.), Gilbert Fuentes Perez (San Jose Earthquakes; Tracy, Calif.), Maximilian Goeggel (VFB Stuttgart; San Francisco, Calif.), Peter Stroud (New York Red Bulls; Chester, NJ)
FORWARDS (6): Julian Gaines (Lonestar Soccer Club; Austin, Tex.), Cade Hagan (Sockers FC; Naperville, Ill.), Diego Lopez (FC Golden State; Chino, Calif.), Alfonso Ocampo-Chavez (Seattle Sounders FC; Fresno, Calif.), Dante Sealy (FC Dallas; Frisco, Tex.), Ray Serrano (Seattle Sounders FC; Graham, Wash.)
The 2017 Nike International Friendlies will feature three doubleheaders, with the USA playing the evening game of each match day. The U.S. will face England on Wednesday, Nov. 29 (7 p.m. ET), Netherlands on Friday, Dec. 1 (7 p.m. ET) and close out the competition against Brazil on Sunday, Dec. 3 (5 p.m. ET). All six matches will be live streamed on U.S. Soccer's Facebook Page, YouTube channel, and ussoccer.com.
Development Academy Ties:
- All 20 players on the roster have ties to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy.
- The roster includes two players who have signed professional contracts as MLS Homegrown Players: George Bello (Atlanta United FC) and Gianluca Busio (Sporting Kansas City)
- Bello is the only DA Champion on the roster, helping lead Atlanta United FC to the 2017 U-15/16 Development Academy national title.
- Forward Alfonso Ocampo Chavez paces the roster with four seasons spent with a Development Academy club; Ocampo Chavez spent three seasons with Merced Atlas Soccer Academy before moving up to Seattle Sounders FC, where he is currently in the midst of his second season.
- At the end of the 2016-17 Academy season, five players were named an Academy U-15/16 Best XI selection to their respective conference, in their respective positions: Axel Alejandre (Central), George Bello (East), Mason Judge (East), Gianluca Busio (Central) and Damian Las (Central).
- Along with the Sounders trio, a total of 12 players on the USA roster represent Development Academy clubs in Major League Soccer: defenders Sebastian Anderson (Colorado Rapids), George Bello (Atlanta United FC) and Joseph Scally (New York City FC), midfielders Joshua Atencio (Seattle Sounders FC), Gilbert Fuentes Perez (San Jose Earthquakes) and Peter Stroud (New York Red Bulls), and forwards Busio (Sporting Kansas City), Alfonso Ocampo Chavez (Seattle Sounders FC) and Dante Sealy (FC Dallas).
- Fourteen of the 20 players were part of the team that finished runner up to Mexico at the 2017 CONCACAF U-15 Championship in August, while sixteen were part of the team that took home the Torneo delle Nazioni championship trophy.
- Maximillian Goeggel is currently the only player plying his trade internationally, playing in VFB Stuttgart's youth system.
- MLS club Seattle Sounders FC has the largest representation of players with three: Joshua Atencio, Alfonso Ocampo Chavez and Ray Serrano.
- Forward Dante Sealy is the only 2003 birth year players on the roster.
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