FRISCO, Texas — For the third time in his career, FC Dallas forward Jesus Ferreira has been called up to a youth national team camp. This time, it will be with the U-23 U.S. National Team, which will play in a warm-up qualifier match for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan on September 9.
Ferreira currently leads the scoring line for FC Dallas with seven goals in 27 appearances in the 2019 season to go along with four assists. He’s the club’s leading goal-scorer, and he recently bagged a goal in the 5-1 win against the Houston Dynamo on August 25.
2019 has been a breakout year for Ferreira, who had only made two appearances for the club before the season’s start. FCD head coach Luchi Gonzalez has been impressed with the way Ferreira has handled the responsibility of being a consistent starter for the team, and he’s seen tremendous growth throughout the season.
“I think there was one thing he did really well this year — he got his citizenship,” Gonzalez said, jokingly. “Jesus has earned opportunities. He never got to play with the U.S. youth system because of his status, so I know he was really excited to get his citizenship and now take advantage of this opportunity at the international level. Similar to Paxton, it’s just a product of him working for this family and for this jersey. He’s going to prepare for his opportunity with the Olympic group while being with his teammates this weekend.”
Ferreira joins a list of numerous other FC Dallas representatives who have been called up to their respective national teams. He will join fellow Homegrowns Edwin Cerrillo and Brandon Servania on the U-23 team, who will play one warm-up match for qualifiers against the Olympic host country, Japan in Chula Vista, California. If he does play in the game, it will be Ferreira's first appearance for the United States at the international level — a big milestone in his budding career.
He said this experience will be particularly special for him since he’ll be joining his teammates at the international level.
“We always want our friends to do good,” Ferreira said. “When we see that other teammates are doing good and getting called up, and they’re getting playing time, it makes us happy. They’re making me better and I’m making them better, so when all three of us get called up, that’s something good for the team and for us.”
Gonzalez said he is happy for all of his players who are getting the chance to represent their countries during the international break, and he also acknowledged how much he likes the idea of players getting different tactics and knowledge from various coaches while on international duty.
“He’s going to get another stimulus,” Gonzalez said. “You always hear about the guys who go to national duty and come back with different tactics, different messages. I’m a big believer that those are positive things for their development, and maybe in the short term — one of two days — there’s adjustments, you have to integrate. But in the long term, it’s great for their development.”
This call-up is a step in the right direction for Ferreira, who will be coached by former FC Dallas player Jason Kreis — the coach of the U-23s. The past and present of the club will get to connect while representing the United States, and Ferreira will get the chance to prove his worth for the country who is noticing his efforts in MLS play.
“I’m happy,” Ferreira said. “I just came from a camp in January with the U-20s, and I’m just happy that they keep me in mind — that they’re seeing what I’m doing here in Dallas and that they have me in mind to get called up again.”