MLS' new Panamanians all make squad to face US
Brek, meet Blas.
Jurgen Klinsmann’s MLS-heavy US national team will get an up close and personal look at the three Panamanians who have signed with MLS teams this offseason, as all were named on Friday to Panama’s 18-man roster to face the Americans in Panama City on Wednesday (8:30 pm ET, ESPN3/Galavisión).
FC Dallas’ new duo Blas Pérez and Carlos Rodríguez join Philadelphia’s Gabriel Gómez as part of Julio César Dely Valdés' squad that will look to avenge their loss to the Americans in last summer’s Gold Cup semifinals.
As Wednesday’s friendly isn’t an official FIFA date, Dely Valdés gave his roster a primarily Under-23 focus with Olympic qualifying approaching. All but four players ply their trade domestically.
At 30 years of age, Pérez (pictured above) is the oldest player on the squad. FC Dallas head coach Schellas Hyndman allowed the forward to remain in Panama for the US match before reporting to his new club. Other recognizable names from the Gold Cup squad include goalkeeper Luis Mejía and forward Luis Rentería.
FULL PANAMA ROSTER
Goalkeepers: Luis Mejía (Fénix/Uruguay), Kevin Melgar (Alianza/Panama)
Defenders: Carlos Rodríguez (FC Dallas), Sergio Thompson (Sporting SM/Panama), Éric Vásquez (Chorrillo FC/Panama), Eduardo Dasent (Tauro FC/Panama), Rolando Algandona (San Francisco FC/Panama), Edward Benítez (Sporting SM/Panama)
Midfielders: Luis Ovalle (Sporting SM/Panama), Amir Waithe (San Francisco FC/Panama), Marcos Sánchez (Tauro FC/Panama), Rolando Botello (Tauro FC/Panama), Gabriel Gómez (Philadelphia Union), Juan de Gracia (Chepo/Panama), Alberto Quintero (Chorrillo FC/Panama)
Forwards: Blas Pérez (FC Dallas), Manuel Mosquer (Árabe Unido/Panama), Luis Rentería (Tauro FC/Panama)