Category: United States Youth National Teams

Weekly Soccer Notes-June 17, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week.

United Soccer League (USL):

Rio Grande Valley FC (RGV FC)

Local UTRGV graduate makes professional debut in the Valley. (

Future El Paso USL team:

In a profile in El Paso Inc. on businessman and energy mogul Paul Foster, there was discussion about the future of soccer in that border city.  El Paso has a rich history of soccer in recent years. In a variety of configurations and names, most famously the El Paso Patriots, professional soccer existed in El Paso from 1989 to 2013.  A return would certainly be welcome by those supporters.

Foster and the other members of MountainStar Sports Group, which is involved in minor league baseball and has investors who are also involved in the second division Mexican team in Ciudad Juarez, are working to bring a USL team and a new soccer-specific stadium to El Paso.

In the article Foster stated: “I can almost guarantee that we’ll have soccer in El Paso within a couple of years.”  (

Here is a link to the article:

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

  • After a week off, the Houston Dash will host the Orlando Pride at BBVA Compass Stadium tonight.  This match will mark the return of the FIFA Women’s Player of the Year, Carli Lloyd, to the Dash after a loan to Manchester City ended.  The last place Dash travel to Orlando next weekend for the return leg in a back-to-back. (
  • The El Paso Times published a profile story documenting the steady path up the coaching ladder that has led El Paso native Omar Morales to be named interim head coach of the Dash.  Below is a link to the story:

United States Youth National Teams:

  • U.S. Under-16 Boys’ National Team has announced a 20-player roster for the team’s second international tournament of 2017, that started on June 6 and ends on Monday. After three days preparation, the team flew to Japan for the 2017 U-16 International Dream Cup.  Four Texas players are on the roster (all part of the FC Dallas Academy):  Goalkeeper:  Michael Collodi from Frisco, midfielders Adrian Munoz from Richardson and Thomas Roberts from Frisco and forward Bryan Reynolds from Little Elm.  (
  • Last week the Under-18 Men’s National Team named a 20-player roster for the team’s second international tournament of 2017, currently taking place in Portugal. Three Texas midfielders were named to the roster and, surprisingly, two are not from the FC Dallas Academy!:  Christian Cappis (Texans SC Houston; West Chicago, Ill.), Koby Carr (Texas Rush; San Antonio, Texas) and Brandon Servania (FC Dallas; Birmingham, Ala.) (

Around the World of Soccer

Best (or in this case worst) Quote of the Week:

“I kept piercing the Estudiantes strikers with a needle.  We know that top division players don’t like contact, they don’t like if we waste time or if we play dirty. So that was the way to do it. Football is like that. Football is for the clever.”

Federico Allende, a defender for Argentina’s lower division Sport Pacifico, quoted in an interview with a Columbian radio station about using a needle against strikers from a top-division club in a first round Copa Argentina match.  It apparently worked since Club Pacifico won 3-2. (BBC)

Best article discovered from outside of The Republic this week:

United States men’s U-20 coach Tab Ramos discussing the future of American soccer after the team advanced to the knock-out rounds of the FIFA U-20 World Cup in South Korea earlier this month. (Paul Gardner/Soccer America)


Weekly Soccer Notes-June 10, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

Bleacher Report’s Noah Davis wrote an excellent long-form piece on former Dynamo defender/midfielder and sometimes forward Geoff Cameron.  He used the word “unheralded” to describe Cameron’s arrival in Houston and that is true.  He joined the team as a third round MLS Super Draft choice in 2008 and in this article Dynamo head coach at the time, Dominic Kinnear, admitted about Cameron’s pick “It was a gamble” .  It didn’t take Dynamo supporters long to consider him heralded.  He scored on his home debut against FC Dallas and was in the starting lineup for the second-leg of a CONCACAF Champions Cup match (predecessor to the current CCL) in Costa Rica early in his rookie season. Now he is one of the top American exports to the English Premier League.

The link to the story is below: (


  • The biennial CONCACAF Gold Cup will be held in the United States from July 7-26. The U.S. submitted a provisional 40 man roster to the Confederation last week…this roster needs to be reduced to 23 by June 27th. Players from Texas teams, or those that are Texas-natives, named to the preliminary roster include:

Defenders:  Greg Garza (Atlanta United), Omar Gonzalez (Pachuca, Mexico),  Matt Hedges (FC Dallas)

Midfielders:  Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas)

Goalkeeper:  Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas)

U.S. born Gonzalez had previously announced his intention to play for Mexico, since he is a dual-national and has represented Mexico in youth tournaments. According to an article on, Fox Sports analyst and former Houston Dynamo Stuart Holden reported that he had recently spoken to Gonzalez’s agent, who said Gonzalez would accept the call if he is selected for the US 23-man roster for the Gold Cup. (

  • Other CONCACAF counties also released their provisional rosters.  Players with current Texas connections include: (

Canada:  Tesho Akindele (FC Dallas)

Honduras:  Maynor Figueroa (FC Dallas), Alberth Elis, Boniek Garcia and Rommel Quioto (Houston Dynamo)

Mexico:  Erick Torres (Houston Dynamo)

Panama:  Adolfo Machado (Houston Dynamo)

  • The CONCACAF website featured an interview with former Dynamo legend Dwayne DeRosario who played for Canada in five Gold Cups before his retirement in 2015. Here is a link to the interview: (

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

The Houston Dash were held scoreless for the second consecutive week, losing 2-0 to the Washington Spirit at the Maryland SoccerPlex last Saturday. Though held scoreless, the Dash forced eight saves from the Spirit goalkeeper.  With the loss, the Dash fell into last place in the league (2-6-0 and 6 points from 8 games).  The Dash now have a week off before their next match against Orlando on June 17th.  It is likely that a new permanent coach will be named at some point during the break, to replace Randy Waldrum who was fired two weeks ago. (

United States Youth National Teams:

36 players have been called into the U.S. Under-15 Girls’ National Team training camp in Portland, Oregon, from June 11-18.  Four Texas players will participate in this camp, three from the North Texas Solar Chelsea club…midfielder Olivia Pena (Irving) and forwards Trinity Byars (Richardson) and Alexis Missimo (Southlake).  Goalkeeper Azul Alvarez (Lonestar SC; Round Rock) rounds out the Texas group.

Youth Soccer Development:

The U.S. Soccer Development Academy playoffs will take place June 22-26 in Westfield, Indiana (a suburb of Indianapolis). The Academy conducted its 2016-17 Playoff draw on Wednesday, with the qualified U-15/16 and U-17/18 teams drawn into eight groups of four teams each.

  • FC Dallas, the defending champions at both age levels, was one of 23 club programs to qualify teams for the 2017 playoffs at both age levels.  At the lower age level, FCD has been grouped with Crew SC Academy Wolves, New York City FC and Baltimore Armour.  The older group will face New York Red Bulls, Seattle Sounders FC and Beachside Soccer Club in the group Stage.  The game against Red Bulls will be one of the marquee match-ups of the group stage.
  • The Houston Dynamo qualified a team at the U 15/16 level and face an all MLS group stage bracket, the first time this has happened in the Academy playoffs. Vancouver Whitecaps FC, LA Galaxy, Philadelphia Union join the Dynamo in what will certainly be a challenging group.

Further details can be found in the link below:  (

Weekly Soccer Notes-Saturday, May 20, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

FC Dallas young star, Paxton Pomykal, suffered a knee injury during training on Wednesday and will miss four to six weeks while recovering from surgery. (

United Soccer League (USL):

Rio Grande Valley FC’s midfielder Todd Wharton was named to the USL Team of the Week as a result of the game winning goal he scored against Swope Park last Saturday

U.S. Open Cup

San Antonio FC eliminated Dutch Lions FC (HDL) from the U.S. Open Cup Wednesday night with a 2-1 second-round victory in Conroe.  Goals by Victor Araujo and Aly Alberto Hassan led a reserve-heavy side to the win.  Araujo’s direct-kick goal was his first since returning from a season ending injury he suffered last June.  After the match, SAFC head coach Darren Powell discussed the lineup choices on the SAFC website.

“We’re very pleased with our guys,” SAFC Head Coach Darren Powell said. “We have a lot of guys who haven’t been playing in the first team in regular season games, so it was a good opportunity for them to play tonight in a competitive environment and show what they’re capable of doing.”

The Dutch Lions made a game out it in the 62nd minute after Nathaniel Coons converted a ricochet shot off a clearance to pull HDL within a goal.

SAFC now advance to the third-round to play in Oklahoma against fellow USL side, Tulsa Roughnecks, on May 31.  If SAFC wins this match, they would play FC Dallas in a fourth-round match in San Antonio on either June 13 or 14. (

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

The Houston Dash lost their second consecutive match last Saturday, when they fell 3-1 to Sky Blue FC at Houston’s BBVA Compass Stadium.  Poliana scored the only goal on an assist from Kealia Ohai for the Dash.

The Dash play a rematch against Sky Blue FC this afternoon at their home in New Jersey on the campus of Rutgers University; Yurcak Field. (

United States Youth National Teams:

A 40 player roster was named for the U.S. U-17 girls national team camp to be held May 14-21 in Florida.  Two of these players are from North Texas: Hollyn Torres and Diana Ordonez, both from the FC Dallas program. (

International Soccer in Texas:

  • A Tecate Summer Tour match between Liga MX clubs Chivas de Guadalajara and Club Atlas will be played at Toyota Field in San Antonio on Wednesday, July 5 at 7:30 p.m. This match will be Chivas’s first game in San Antonio in over 18 years. (
  • Also at Toyota Field, SAFC will play a friendly against LigaMX side, Santos Laguna, on Saturday night July 8.  This game will be Santos’s third trip to San Antonio since 2013, having played against Club America in the Alamodome last summer and at Toyota Field 4 years ago. (

Around the World of Soccer

Quote of the Week:

“Schalke was pretty straight forward in terms of, ‘Our U-19s are more important than your national team so they’re going to stay here until we’re done playing.’ That’s something for young players to look at when go to Europe. Sometimes you’re going to sign for a club that thinks your national team’s not that important at the youth level.”

United States U-20 Mens National Team coach Tab Ramos describing why two potential U.S. youth players (including former FC Dallas Academy star Weston McKennie) were left off the U.S. U-20 World Cup roster for the tournament that will be played in South Korea next month.  (Soccer America)

Best Article discovered from outside of the Republic this week:

Less Geography, More History Needed to Grow MLS Rivalries

Graham Parker from FourFourTwo USA explores the rationale for the creation of rivalries in MLS and the shifting nature of these intense match-ups in this excellent piece.

In Texas, the rivalry between FC Dallas and Houston abated a few years ago when Houston was moved from the Western to the Eastern conference and the teams only met once per year.  During this period, the Dynamo established a heated rivalry with Sporting Kansas City, primarily due to three straight Eastern Conference playoff series between them between 2011 and 2013.   Now that FCD and Houston are reunited in the West, the rivalry with SKC had diminished.  Hopefully, through a combination of history, geography and mutual success, the rivalry between FCD and Houston will be rekindled. It has been somewhat subdued over the last few years because of FCD’s domination.

Weekly Soccer Notes-Saturday, May 6, 2017

Other news of interest in Texas Soccer this week:

Major League Soccer (MLS):

Steve Fenn, who has his own together this statistically rich Tableau Software table to graphically depict the recently released MLS salary data from the MLS Players Union.  FC Dallas are 14th in spending in the 22 team league.  The Houston Dynamo are dead last, which won’t come as any surprise to their fan base.

National Women’s Soccer League (NWSL):

The Houston Dash defeated the Washington Spirit 1-0 on the road last Saturday evening. Kealia Ohai, who scored the 28th minute game winner, was named to the NWSL Team of the Month for April on the heels of her two goals and an assist in three matches. NWSL put together a video that features the 13 goals she has scored in the last 13 games (link below).  The Dash remain on the road this week, playing a rematch of their opening week victory over Chicago Red Stars today at 4 pm in Chicago.  The Dash are now 2-1 and tied for second place with two other teams.

Youth Soccer Development: 

  • Major League Soccer announced that four Texas MLS Academy coaches will participate in the third-phase of a partnership with the French Football Federation (FFF) to provide a 14-month training program to MLS youth Academy coaches.  The program includes field and classroom training in both France and the U.S., a one week immersion visit to a European Academy and assistance in integrating aspects of the program into existing MLS Academies.
    • Texas participants are Chris Hayden from FC Dallas and Scott James from Houston Dynamo. (
  • MLS also announced that a partnership with Spain’s La Liga has been established to provide continuing education to graduates of this FFF program and other MLS Academy Directors.
    • Texas MLS participants in this program are the two Academy directors-Luchi Gonzalez from FC Dallas and James Clarkson from the Dynamo. (
  • The Houston Dynamo U-14 Academy team is participating in the 2017 Cayman Airways Invitational Youth Football Cup for the second consecutive year. (

Mexico Border Soccer clubs:

FC Juarez, a Mexican Liga MX Ascenso second division team, played the first leg of the Torneo Clausura Final against Lobos BUAP (Puebla) Wednesday night.  Lobos was the winner of the first leg 2-1.  FC Juarez took an early 1-0 lead and also gained a vital away goal off a redirected direct kick.  The second leg is tonight in Juarez’s Olympic Benito Juarez stadium.  FC Juarez is partially owned by Texas-based Mountain Star Sports Group and other El Paso investors.  Mountain Star has had conversations with both MLS and USL within the last few years to potentially establish a soccer team in El Paso also. (various sources)


Texas Players in the News

Articles about two United States international players from Texas, one from the senior mens team and the other in the youth system, have recently been published.

  • The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Steve Hummer wrote about Grapevine-native and U.S. International left back Greg Garza last Saturday. Garza, who joined expansion side Atlanta United this offseason, certainly has a rich and varied soccer career for somebody who is still only 25.  Here is a link to the article and interview.

  • US Mens U-17 Southlake native Blaine Ferri was featured in a profile on US Soccer last week.  Ferri, who plays club soccer with Dallas area Chelsea Solar, is currently playing with the US U-17’s in the CONCACAF U-17 Championships in Panama City. Here is a link to the profile.