BRIAN SCIARETTA - Wednesday, July 13, 2011
US Under-18 head coach Mike Matkovich announced the 18-man roster for the squad at will compete in the 2011 Milk Cup in Northern Ireland.
The team consists entirely of players that are eligible for the 2013 U-20 World Cup and the US will enter the tournament as the defending champions after Thomas Rongen's U-20 team won the title last year.
The team will be lead by Ipswich goalkeeper Cody Cropper and Birmingham City midfielder Will Packwood who are both entering the tournament after signing their first professional contracts.
In addition to Cropper and Packwood, the US will have two other foreign based players. Left back Juan Ocegueda from Tigres is on the team as he continues his involvement with US Soccer after turning down call-ups from Mexican youth national teams.
German-American forward Jerome Kiesewetter from Hertha Berlin has seen time with the US U-20 national team and will look to boost the team's offense. He will be joined up top by Vancouver Whitecap forward Omar Salgado who was on the last U20 World Cup qualifying time and went on to be the number one overall MLS draft pick in 2011.
There are nine players on the team that are listed with MLS teams and this contingent is highlighted by Real Salt Lake midfielder Luis Gil, 17, who has begun to impress with the franchise's first team.
At the Milk Cup, the US will take on Israel on July 25 and Mexico on July 27 in group play followed by a placement game on July 29.
Cropper, Cody (Ipswich Town)
Kempin, Jon (Sporting Kansas City)
Ambrose, Michael (FC Dallas)
Gallego, Bryan (New York Red Bulls)
McCrary, Jordan (North Carolina)
Ocegueda, Juan Pablo (UANL Tigres)
Okwuonu, Boyd (FC Dallas)
Robinson, Jalen (D.C. United)
Torre, Javan (Pateadores)
Zimmerman, Walker (Furman University)
Gil, Luis (Real Salt Lake)
Packwood, William (Birmingham City)
Pineda, Victor (Chicago Fire)
Salandy-Defour, Marcus (D.C. United)
Shinksy, Alex (Maryland)
Kiesewetter, Jerome (Hertha BSC)
Rendon, Luis (FC Richmond Magic)
Salgado, Omar (Vancouver Whitecaps)