FRISCO, Texas (Friday, June 7) – While his classmates prepare for high school graduation, 17-year-old Kellyn Acosta is in Portugal with the U.S. U-20 National Team preparing for his second World Cup.
Today, U.S. Under-20 Men’s National Team head coach Tab Ramos named Acosta to his 21-player roster that will represent the USA at the 2013 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Turkey from June 21 to July 13. The team opens World Cup play on June 21 against Spain in Istanbul. All U.S. matches will be broadcast on ESPN networks. Acosta also played in the 2011 U-17 World Cup for the United States.
A native of Plano, Texas, and a product of the FC Dallas Academy, Acosta signed a professional contract with FC Dallas in 2012 at age 16. He began training full-time with the first team in 2013, but has yet to make his MLS debut. Fellow FC Dallas Academy product Danny Garcia joins Acosta on the roster. The duo played on the FC Dallas U-17/18 Academy squad that won the 2011-12 Academy Finals Week title game against Vancouver Whitecaps FC at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston last year.
The U.S. is coming off a four-game stretch at the Under-21 Toulon Tournament in France, where Ramos and his staff utilized the event to evaluate and finalize the U-20 World Cup roster. Sixteen of the players on the USA’s 22-player Toulon Tournament roster are part of the World Cup.
As was his role in the CONCACAF U-20 Championship and previous tournaments, SC Freiburg defender Caleb Stanko will serve as the team captain in Turkey. Two newcomers to the U-20 MNT were brought in for the Toulon Tournament – Acosta and Monterrey forward Alonso Hernandez, having both performed well at the event.
The U-20 MNT was drawn into a difficult group for the FIFA U-20 World Cup. The U.S. opens Group A play against Spain on Friday, June 21, at Ali Sami Yen Arena in Istanbul. The match will be broadcast at 1:45 p.m. ET, live on ESPN2 and WatchESPN. That is followed by a June 24 game against France in Istanbul, live on ESPN2 and WatchESPN at 10:45 a.m. ET. The U.S. closes out group play with a June 27 match against Ghana at Kadir Has Stadium in Kayseri, Turkey, at 12:45 p.m. ET, live on ESPNU and WatchESPN.
Roster by Position:
GOALKEEPERS (3): 1-Cody Cropper (Southampton FC; Maple Grove, Minn.), 12-Kendall McIntosh (Santa Clara; Santa Rosa, Calif.), 21-Zach Steffen (FC DELCO; Downington, Pa.)
DEFENDERS (7): 13-Eric Miller (Creighton; Woodbury, Minn.), 3-Juan Pablo Ocegueda (Guadalajara; Riverside, Calif.), 5-Shane O’Neill (Colorado Rapids; Boulder, Colo.), 18-Oscar Sorto (LA Galaxy; Los Angeles, Calif.), 4-Caleb Stanko (SC Freiburg; Holly, Mich.), 14-Javan Torre (UCLA; Santa Monica, Calif.), 2-DeAndre Yedlin (Seattle Sounders; Seattle, Wash.)
MIDFIELDERS (5): 16-Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas; Plano, Texas), 10-Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake; Garden Grove, Calif.), 8-Benji Joya (Santos Laguna; San Jose, Calif.), 15-Mikey Lopez (Sporting Kansas City; Mission, Texas), 6-Wil Trapp (Columbus Crew; Gahanna, Ohio)
FORWARDS (6): 20-Daniel Cuevas (Santos Laguna; Sacramento, Calif.), 17-Danny Garcia (North Carolina; Dallas, Texas), 7-Victor Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.), 19-Alonso Hernandez (C.F. Monterrey; El Paso, Texas), 9-Mario Rodriguez (1. FC Kaiserslautern; North Hollywood, Calif.), 11-Jose Villarreal (LA Galaxy; Inglewood, Calif.)