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US Youth Soccer a Common Thread among U.S. COPA America Centenario roster


FRISCO, Texas (May 24, 2016) – Of the 23 players announced to the U.S. Men’s National Team COPA America Centenario roster, 17 have US Youth Soccer ties.

The COPA America Centenario marks the 100th time the tournament will be played, making it the oldest international continental soccer competition. The hosts, United States, will play the opening match of the tournament June 3 against Colombia before taking on Costa Rica on June 7 and Paraguay on June 11.

Fifteen players on the COPA America Centernario rosters are US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (ODP) alums, with the likes of Matt Besler, Graham Zusi and Bobby Wood attending US Youth Soccer ODP Interregional events. Zusi was selected as an All-star at the 2003 US Youth Soccer ODP Boys Interregional.

In addition to ODP experience, 16 players on the COPA America Centenario roster have played in the US Youth Soccer National Championships Series (NCS). DeAndre Yedlin, Steve Birnbaum and Darlington Nagbe all played in multiple US Youth Soccer Regional Championships.

Michael Bradley won the 2002 US Youth Soccer Region II Championships and placed third in the 2002 US Youth Soccer National Championships with Sockers FC (IL). Perry Kitchen won the 2005 US Youth Soccer Region II Championships with Chicago Magic (IL), while Alejandro Bedoya won the US Youth Soccer Region III Championships in 2004 and 2006 with Weston FC (FL).

Watch the 2016 COPA American Centenario and support the USMNT:


June 3

9:30 p.m. ET

vs. Colombia


June 7

8:00 p.m. ET

vs. Costa Rica


June 11

7:00 p.m. ET

vs. Paraguay

U.S. Roster by Position:

GOALKEEPERS (3): 1-Brad Guzan^* (Aston Villa) [IL], 12-Tim Howard^* (Colorado Rapids) [NJ], 22-Ethan Horvath^* (Molde IK) [CO]

DEFENDERS (8): 5-Matt Besler^* (Sporting KC) [KS], 3-Steve Birnbaum^* (D.C. United) [CA-S], 6-John Brooks (Hertha Berlin), 20-Geoff Cameron^* (Stoke City) [MA], 21-Timmy Chandler (Eintracht Frankfurt), 23-Fabian Johnson (Borussia Moenchengladbach), 14-Michael Orozco (Club Tijuana), 2-DeAndre Yedlin^* (Tottenham Hotspur) [WA]

MIDFIELDERS/FORWARDS (12): 15-Kyle Beckerman^* (Real Salt Lake) [MD], 11-Alejandro Bedoya^* (Nantes) [FL], 4-Michael Bradley^* (Toronto FC) [IL], 8-Clint Dempsey^* (Seattle Sounders FC) [N-TX], 13-Jermaine Jones (Colorado Rapids), 16-Perry Kitchen^* (Heart of Midlothian) [IL], 10-Darlington Nagbe^* (Portland Timbers) [OH-N], 17-Christian Pulisic (Borussia Dortmund), 18-Chris Wondolowski^* (San Jose Earthquakes) [CA-N], 7-Bobby Wood^* (Hamburg SV) [HI], 20-Gyasi Zardes* (LA Galaxy) [CA-S], 19-Graham Zusi^* (Sporting KC) [FL]

^= US Youth Soccer ODP
*= US Youth Soccer NCS


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