MLS Academies heavily represented on Canada's Under-17 squad for CONCACAF Championship
If Canada are to make a return to the FIFA U-17 World Cup for the second time in a row, they’ll be relying heavily on the Academy players of Canada’s three MLS teams.
Head coach Sean Fleming unveiled his 23-man preliminary squad late Thursday ahead of the CONCACAF U-17 Championship, and 11 players train under the MLS umbrella.
The Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency program has six players representing, including goalkeeper Marco Carducci (above), while Toronto FC have five. The Montreal Impact have a single inclusion.
The team will assemble in Florida for a four-day training camp. The roster will be trimmed down to 20 before the team departs for Panama, where they’ve been drawn into a group with Costa Rica and Trinidad and Tobago in the qualifying tournament beginning April 6.
The top two teams in the group advance to the quarterfinals, where a win there would see Canada advance to October’s U-17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
Two years ago, Canada earned their first ever points at a U-17 World Cup when they tied England and Rwanda.
CANADIAN U-17 NATIONAL TEAM SQUAD
Goalkeepers (3): Marco Carducci (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency), Daniel Milton (Ajax Thunder), James Pantemis (Lakeshore SC)
Defenders (7): Alex Comsia (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency), Mathieu Laurent (Mississauga Falcons), Elias Roubos (Toronto FC Academy), Kevon Black (Toronto FC Academy), Ian Fernandes (Toronto FC Academy), Aron Mkungilwa (Academie Impact Montreal), Samuel Vinson (West Pine Strikers).
Midfielders (9): Mikael Cantave (Orvault Sport Football/France), Marco-Leonel Dominguez (Braves d’Ahuntsic), Kianz Gonzales-Froese (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency), Jordan Haynes (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency), Derek Sequeira (Toronto FC Academy), Ali Muse (WSA Winnipeg), Marco Bustos (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency), Andrew Gordon (Woodbridge Strikers), Matthew Chow (Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency).
Forwards (4): Hanson Boakai (FC Edmonton), Jordan Hamilton (Toronto FC Academy) El Mehdi Ibn Brahim (Braves d’Ahuntsic), Derek Cornelius (Unionville U-21).