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Matkovich to Take 20 Players to Tel Aviv for Four-Team Tournament

The U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team is set to travel to Tel Aviv for a three-game tournament that will also feature host Israel, Germany and France from Dec. 10-18. The U.S. will play France on Dec. 14 and Israel on Dec. 16.  The U.S. was originally scheduled to play Germany on Monday, Dec. 13, but that game was moved to the morning of Dec. 17 due to travel complications.

U.S. head coach Mike Matkovich will bring 20 players to Tel Aviv, including 18 Development Academy players including two professionals in goalkeeper Jonathan Kempin from Sporting Kansas City and midfielder Victor Pineda from the Chicago Fire. Kempin recently returned from the Torneo de las Americas where he helped the U.S. U-20 MNT to a pair of draws against Colombia and Mexico.

Villyan Bijev recently scored three goals in the Select game at the ongoing Development Academy Winter Showcase. He was one of 11 players on the trip to have participated in that game. There are 15 players that participated in Matkovich’s 36-player training camp at The Home Depot Center in November.

Roster By Position:
GOALKEEPERS (2): Jonathan Kempin (Sporting Kansas City; Leawood, Kan.), Andrew Wolverton (Concorde Fire; Snellville, Ga.)
DEFENDERS (5): Michael Ambrose (FC Dallas Academy; Frisco, Texas), Jonathan Campbell (North Carolina Fusion; Greensboro, S.C.), Bryan Gallego (NY Red Bulls Academy; Kinnelon, N.J.), Juan Pablo Ocegueda (UANL Tigres; Riverside, Calif.), Boyd Okwuonu (FC Dallas Academy; Edmund, Okla.), Walker Zimmerman (GSA Phoenix; Lawrenceville, Ga.)
MIDFIELDERS (8): Connor Hallisey (California Development Academy; Granite Bay, Calif.), Jordan McCrary (Concorde Fire; Marietta, Ga.), Daniel Metzger (NY Red Bulls Academy; Holmdel, N.J.), Victor Pineda (Chicago Fire; Bolingbrook, Ill.), Marcus Salandy-Defour (DC United Academy; Kensington, Md.), Will Trapp (Columbus Crew Academy; Gahanna, Ohio), Cooper Vandermaas-Peeler (CASL Chelsea; Cary, N.C.)
FORWARDS (5): Villyan Bijev (Cal Odyssey; Fresno, Calif.), Sean Okoli (Seattle Sounders Academy; Federal Way, Wash.), Luis Rendon (FC Richmond Magic; Chesterfield, Va.), Khiry Shelton (Lonestar SC Academy; Leander, Texas), Jonathan Top (FC Dallas Academy; Forth Worth, Texas)