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U.S. Under-18 MNT Hold Mega-Camp at The Home Depot Center From January 17-24

Jenkins Invites 58 Players to Opening Camp of 2006

CHICAGO (January 6, 2006) – The U.S. Under-18 Men’s National Team will kickoff 2006 with a 58-player mega-camp from January 17-24 at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. All of the players on the roster were born in 1989.
With a three-year gap between the U-17 and the U-20 Men’s National Team, the Under-18 MNT was created to aid in the transition for younger players born in the odd-numbered years. The players on the U-18s are predominantly those who fall in that age gap where they were too old for the U-17s, but yet still young to have an immediate impact with the U-20s.

Players on this Under-18 roster (players born since January 1, 1989) will be the core age-group for the 2009 FIFA World Youth Championship, although it is possible they could be chosen for the 2007 FIFA World Youth Championship in Canada, which will consist mainly of players born in 1987 or 1988 (players born after Jan. 1, 1987, are eligible).

Out of the 58 players in camp, 10 are currently part of U.S. Soccer’s U-17 Residency Program, including three members of the 2005 FIFA U-17 World Championship squad – forward Josmer Altidore, midfielder Daniel Kelly and goalkeeper Brian Perk.

U.S. Under-18 MNT head coach Bob Jenkins and his seven assistants will instruct the 58 players during the week-long camp and evaluate them for the next cycle of Under-20s.

“If you look at our player pool from our last U-18 group, it was about 70 players, so what we’re trying to do this year is get an early look at a large portion of our player pool,” said Jenkins. “And the best environment to evaluate players is when the best players are with the best players. This camp will give us a good handle on which players we will continue to have in later camps or invite in for international tournaments this year.”

The Under-18s are scheduled to have their next camp sometime in March and compete in two international tournaments in Europe during the summer.

The ultimate goal of the U-18 program is to provide these players with the opportunity to continue to grow and improve, so they have the ability to make the jump to the U-20s, the U-23s and ultimately the full Men’s National Team. During their time with the Under-18s, the players are immersed in top-level training and games against some of the best club and national teams around the world to help them reach those goals. 
“Continuing player development is still the most important aspect at this level,” said Jenkins. “I’m sure there are a large number of talented players in this group. I have no doubt over the next few years they will continue to progress through the national team programs.”

Over the years, numerous players who were part of the U-18 program climbed the ladder to the U-20s and became fixtures on the squad, helping the team at the FIFA World Youth Championship. At the 2005 FIFA World Youth Championship in UAE, where the U.S. won the “Group of Death”, 10 of the players on the roster had spent time with the Under-18 Men’s National Team program.

GOALKEEPERS (6): Joe Bendik (Marieta, Ga.), Matt Brutto (Warrington, Pa.), Brandyn Bumpas (Denver, Colo.), Warren Gross (Greenfield Center, N.Y.), Joe Parsons (Springfield, Mass.), Brian Perk (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif.);

DEFENDERS (20): Bryan Arguez (Bradenton, Fla.), Sam Arthur (Roswell, Ga.), William Caston (Fort Worth, Texas), Andreas Chronis (Bayside, N.Y.), Johnathan Collier (Fayetteville, Ga.), Kyle Davies (Danville, Calif.), Greg Eckhardt (Orange Park, Fla.), Doug Ferner (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), Blair Gavin (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Colin Givens (Troy, Mich.), Erik Johnsen (Seattle, Wash.), Cam Lamming (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.), Jeff Leach (Canaan, Conn.), Raphael Martinez (Portage, Ind.), Evan McNiel (Castic, Calif.), Andre Mittoo (Hollywood, Fla.), Ethan Morrow (Surrey, England), Daniel Rodriguez (Oxnard, Calif.), Anthony Wallace (St. Petersburg, Fla.), Marcus Watson (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.);

MIDFIELDERS (23): Wilber Bonilla (Brentwood, N.Y.), Cameron Brown (Garland, Texas), Pepe Carotenuto (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Karol Chorak (Boca Raton, Fla.), Andrew Duran (Mokena, Ill.), Kaoru Forbess (Benton, Ark.), Andrew Giallombardo (Manalapan, N.J.), Jose Gonzalez (Socal, Calif.), Keoki Haole (Kapoli, Hawaii), Daniel Kelly (Hendersonville, Tenn.), John Kluz (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.), Eber Martinez (Arlington, Va.), Gerson Mayen (Los Angeles, Calif.), Luke Norman (Rochester, Mich.), Vincent O’Campo (San Diego, Calif.), Kedoa Osorio (Makakilo, Hawaii), Micahel Paez (Whittier, Calif.), Julian Serrato (Boca Raton, Fla.), Josue Soto (Monterrey, Mexico), Michael Stephens (Naperville, Ill.), Lucas Swertloff (Brooklyn, N.Y.), John Tardy (Staten Island, N.Y.), Ryan Thomas (Claremont, Calif.);

FORWARDS (9): Josmer Altidore (Boca Raton, Fla.), Edgar Barajas (Pacoima, Calif.), Mike Lindsay (Starksville, Miss.), Perica Marosevic (Rockford, Ill.), Dimitri Omphroy (Alameda, Calif.), Sam Petrone (Glenrock, N.J.), Jesse Rodriguez (Washington, D.C.), Cesar Romero (San Diego, Calif.), Joseph Sorrentino (Trenton, N.J.). is the official site of U.S. Soccer, the governing body of soccer in the United States.