Five receive call-up for U-23 camp
The Canadian Soccer Association (CSA) announced today that Vancouver Whitecaps FC midfielders Philippe Davies and Ethan Gage, and strikers Randy Edwini-Bonsu and Kyle Porter have all been called up to Canada's U-23 Olympic team for an identification training camp in Sunrise, Florida, next week. ’Caps goalkeeper Julien Latendresse-Lévesque - currently enjoying his second season on loan with FC Energie Cottbus - will also be in camp.
All products of the Whitecaps FC Residency program, the four outfield players saw first-team action with the Blue and White during the 2010 season. The quintet are part of head coach Tony Fonseca's 18-player squad, with the former Whitecaps FC head coach handing Davies and Edwini-Bonsu their second call-ups to the U-23 squad since the Olympic team's last training camp back in January.
Davies, 19, returns to the Olympic squad after a highly productive season with the men's team. After making just two first-team appearances in 2009, the native of Longueuil, Quebec, started 26 of his 32 appearances for 1,921 minutes of action this season. Playing primarily as a right-sided midfielder, Davies scored one goal and recorded two assists for four points during the 2010 campaign. His first men's team goal came in a 2-2 draw away to Carolina RailHawks on July 31.
Gage, 19, earns his first call-up to the U-23 squad after starting five of his 11 appearances for 564 minutes of action during his third season with the men's team. This included action during the USSF D-2 playoffs, as he played at right fullback. The native of Cochrane, Alberta, also played much of the Residency team's 2010 season in the United Soccer Leagues (USL) Premier Development League (PDL), with the midfielder making 13 appearances for 1,054 minutes of action.
Edwini-Bonsu, 20, returns to the Olympic squad after starting five of his 22 appearances for 590 minutes of action. His two goals for the men's team this season came in a 1-1 home draw with Athletic Club of St. Louis on July 14 and a 3-0 victory at Crystal Palace Baltimore on September 11. The native of Edmonton, Alberta, also made three PDL appearances for the club's Residency team for 159 minutes of action.
Porter, 20, earns his first call-up to the U-23 squad after making five appearances for 176 minutes of action with Whitecaps FC last season. The native of Mississauga, Ontario, earned one assist and started the second leg of the USSF D-2 semifinal last October. Porter returned to Vancouver during the summer transfer window after two seasons on loan with with FC Energie Cottbus.
Latendresse-Lévesque, 19, has also earned his first call-up to the U-23 squad. Prior to his loan move in August 2009, the native of Chambly, Quebec, appeared for the Residency team during their second season in the USL Premier PDL.
Fonseca and his players will train twice daily and take part in a pair of exhibition matches against local clubs as they prepare for Canada's qualifying campaign for the 2012 Men's Olympic Football Tournament in London, England. Fonseca will have until early 2012 to prepare this age category for the CONCACAF Men's Olympic Qualification Tournament.