Hard work and determination are set to pay off for another FC Dallas Academy product.
On Saturday, with seven players on International duty, Homegrown defender Aaron Guillen will make his professional debut, just weeks into his rookie season.
“It’s amazing,” the El Paso-native said. “Every weekend, every time they played here when I was in the Academy, I would attend the first team games. It’s always been my dream to play for FC Dallas and it’s just amazing to be here.”
Guillen played one season with the FCD U-18 Academy after playing for the youth club’s affiliate in El Paso, but started almost every game for the team that won the club’s first US Soccer Development Academy National Championship in 2012. After playing four seasons at Florida Gulf Coast University, his young career is set to come full circle.
“Even when he was playing U-18s - you could see he was mature and a little bit different,” Technical Director Fernando Clavijo said. “We’re excited - excited to see him play.”
“It’s been what I’ve been waiting for since I got here,” Guillen said. “I come out to practice every day and train 100 percent and give my best to get this opportunity.”
And when he takes the field Saturday, the 22-year-old will still be sporting one result of giving 100 percent in training - a nasty black eye picked up a week ago during a short-sided game, where he also broke his nose. Guillen, however, was right back to training the next day to the surprise of no one.
“He’s a fighter,” Clavijo said. “Maybe other players would call it quits and take maybe a week or so off, but he gets up from the knock and just wants to keep playing and keep doing it. That shows you what he’s made of.”