WALDWICK, N.J. – The Red Bulls officially announced on Monday morning that they have signed yet another academy player, this time adding United States U-20 national team defender Sacir Hot to their senior roster.
Last week Maryland product and New Jersey native Matt Kassel, who was Hot's teammate in the Red Bulls Academy, was also signed to a Home Grown contract.
The deal with New York comes after Hot spent two weeks in the middle of January training with Bundesliga sides Borussia Mönchengladblach and Borussia Dortmund.
Hot explained that his time in Germany went well and both clubs were impressed with his play in reserve league matches, but he wanted to be ready for this summer’s U-20 World Cup and MLS provided him the best opportunity for that training and experience.
The center back was offered the chance by both German clubs to return this summer for a longer look, but Hot wanted to turn professional this spring.
“I’ve always wanted to be with the Red Bulls, whether it was now or at the end of my career,” Hot said. “I love the Red Bulls.”
Hot, in fact, was a ball boy for the Red Bulls growing up, when the club was then known as the MetroStars. He said he used to stand on the sideline and watch the MLS games, dreaming that one day he would be on the field at Giants Stadium.
But while Hot won’t be running out of the tunnel at Giants Stadium this year like he dreamed as a youth, he can’t wait for the same experience at Red Bull Arena.
“It’s surreal,” Hot said. “I can’t wait for that first day – walking into the stadium, whether it is on the bench or starting.”
The former Boston College defender trained with the New York last summer for a week and also played two matches with the academy against the first team. He said that he isn’t worried about immediate playing time and that “I’m not even thinking about starting.”
Having been a product of the club, he’s confident that this is the right place for his future, both near- and long-term.
Head coach Hans Backe doesn’t necessarily think that Hot is an immediate plug-in along the team’s back four, calling him “a guy for the future.” But after conversations with U-20 national team coach Thomas Rongen, Backe’s confident that the future is bright for Hot.
“He rates him very high for the U-20s,” Backe said of Rongen’s impression of Hot. “He’s been real solid.”
Kristian R. Dyer can be followed at twitter.com/KristianRDyer.