Hello to any new followers my Emiliano Dudar story have brought! Hope you all are as excited for the upcoming DC United season as I am.
But the real United news today are the team’s two academy products that have been brought into Tab Ramos’ U-20 United States Men’s National Team. The two are center back Jalen Robinson and left midfielder Collin Martin. Robinson was a member of the 2011 Milk Cup team that played in Northern Ireland this past summer and is rated as the 13th best prospect in the country for 2012 by Top Drawer Soccer. Martin is rated the 39th best prospect in the country for the 2013 class and was the high scorer for the U-16 team the year before. United’s academy teams have been playing a 4-3-3, installed by former Ajax product Soony Silooy and in line with the style of play being installed in the youth national teams.
These players are in addition to academy players Patrick “Paddy” Foss and Brad Vorv, each of whom who have excited fans by featuring in the final two Reserve League games this November. Foss spent the summer at the residency program in Bradenton, Florida, also scored a hat trick in April against the Chinese U-17 national team. And that is still not to mention forward Marcus Salandy-Defour, who has been a part of the youth national teams in the past and paced the U-18 team’s attack throughout the summer.
Some of these players will be signed before going to college or after one year at college; to let all of them get away would be a travesty. And with their Homegrown signings so far, United has done nothing to hint that they will not do what it takes to get these kids under contract if they believe that they will make good pros. My “bold” prediction is that at least one of these players will be signed for the upcoming season; maybe they won’t have a Najarian impact, but then again, who could?
Also seen as I was looking through various Academy rosters: Denis and Cristhyan Najar. I’m sure by the time both of them are on the senior team, Andy will be gone, but how cool would it be to have three Najars spearheading the attack? And for two people who know far more about the youth national teams and club teams than I, follow Joe Mauceri and Travis Clark on Twitter.