Get ready for the show, kid.
FC Dallas head coach Luchi Gonzalez is set to hand 16-year-old striker Ricardo Pepi a start in their fourth round U.S. Open Cup game against OKC Energy Wednesday night (8 pm ET | ESPN+). He was signed to a short-term loan, the club announced Tuesday afternoon.
#FCDallas coach Luchi Gonzalez tells reporters that he plans to start 16 year old Ricardo Pepi in tomorrow’s #USOC2019 match against the OKC Energy. Pepi has 7 goals in 6 matches for North Texas SC pic.twitter.com/e2parkP61g— Arman Kafai (@ArmanKafai) June 11, 2019
Pepi, who signed this past December as the first player in North Texas SC history, has enjoyed a strong start to his USL League One career. Through six matches, the U.S. youth international has seven goals and one assist.
This past May, Pepi played a vital role for the U.S. U-17 team at the Concacaf U-17 Championship. They ultimately fell, 2-1, to Mexico in the final.
North Texas SC was founded ahead of the 2019 season as part of the FC Dallas academy, providing a meaningful destination for young players to develop. Now, Pepi will hope to continue the club’s Open Cup run, as they’re riding an eight-game win streak in the fourth round that dates back to 2004. Dallas has also won its last two Open Cup meetings against OKC, coming out on top in 2015 and 2016.