Los Angeles MLS and LIGA MX reveal eight-player rosters facing off in five head-to-head skills competitions; Tickets for the 2021 MLS All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T 5G are available here

FRISCO, Texas (August 12, 2021) – FC Dallas Homegrown Ricardo Pepi will participate in the 2021 MLS All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T 5G on Tuesday, Aug. 24 at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles (8 p.m. CT, FS1 / TUDN / TSN / TVA Sports). At 18 years old, he is the youngest among the Stars named to MLS’ eight-player roster which was announced today along with LIGA MX’s eight-player roster. Both teams of elite players will compete head-to-head in five skills competitions. 

The young breakthrough FC Dallas Homegrown player will star alongside the reigning MLS Cup Most Valuable Player and Newcomer of the Year Columbus Crew’s Lucas Zelarayán. On July 24, Pepi became the youngest player in MLS and FC Dallas history to score a hat trick at 18 years and 196 days old, surpassing the previous MLS record set in 2013 by Kekuta Manneh. He currently leads FC Dallas with eight goals and is the highest scoring American in the league.

The MLS side will also feature the league’s leading scorers in Seattle Sounders FC forward Raúl Ruidíaz (11 goals), as well as LA Galaxy forward and the Mexican National Team’s all-time leading scorer Javier “Chicharito” Hernández, who is tied for third-most goals (10) this campaign. Orlando City SC front man Nani – the hero of the 2019 Skills Challenge who ranks sixth in goals (9) and tied for third in assists (6) – will once again put his skills on display next to Los Angeles Football Club superstar and FIFA World Cup participant Carlos Vela. Vela holds MLS records for most goals by a player in a single season (34, 2019) and most goals scored by a Mexican player in an MLS career (57).

MLS will lean on the shot-stopping abilities of newly minted Concacaf Gold Cup champion of the U.S. Men’s National Team in New England Revolution goalkeeper Matt Turner, whose 75 percent save percentage will provide an added complement to Orlando City SC goalkeeper Pedro Gallese.

LIGA MX is coming strong with its most high-profile players as well in Tigres UANL’s all-time leading scorer Andre-Pierre Gignac, a French international fresh off the Tokyo Olympic Games whose striking and aerial dominance led to 16 goals during the 2020-21 season. Gignac will be joined by C.F. Monterrey’s Rogelio Funes Mori alongside Cruz Azul’s Orbelín Pineda. Both Funes Mori and Pineda starred on Mexico’s Gold Cup roster and will reprise the U.S. vs. Mexico rivalry between clubs, countries, and now All-Stars.

In addition, Deportivo Toluca F.C.’s Rubens Sambueza will showcase one of the most skilled and experienced players in LIGA MX, as an expert free kick taker with freestyle flair alongside Cruz Azul’s Jonathan Rodríguez, the reigning Balón de Oro 2021 winner, earning that honor as the best player in LIGA MX.

The complete rosters for MLS and LIGA MX sides competing in the 2021 MLS All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T 5G are below.

Additional information on the 2021 MLS All-Star Skills Challenge is available at MLSsoccer.com/All-Star.

2021 MLS All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T 5G

MLS Competitors

Pedro Gallese (Orlando City SC, Goalkeeper), Javier “Chicharito” Hernández (LA Galaxy, Forward), Nani (Orlando City SC, Forward), Ricardo Pepi (FC Dallas, Forward), Raul Ruidiaz (Seattle Sounders FC, Forward), Matt Turner (New England Revolution, Goalkeeper), Carlos Vela (Los Angeles Football Club, Forward), Lucas Zelarayán (Columbus Crew SC, Forward),

LIGA-MX Competitors

Rogelio Funes Mori (C.F. Monterrey, Forward), Jonathan Rodríguez (Cruz Azul, Forward), Andre-Pierre Gignac (Tigres UANL, Forward), Rubens Sambueza (Deportivo Toluca F.C., Midfielder), Diego Valdés (Santos Laguna, Midfielder), Orbelín Pineda (Cruz Azul, Midfielder), Alfredo Talavera (Pumas UNAM, Goalkeeper), Nahuel Guzmán (Tigres UANL, Goalkeeper)