UPDATE: Midfielder Michael Petrasso will no longer be joining the squad. He has been replaced by Whitecaps FC Residency midfielder Jordan Haynes.
OTTAWA, ON – The Canadian Soccer Association announced on Wednesday that nine players who have developed through the Vancouver Whitecaps FC Residency program have been named to the Canadian men’s U-20 roster for the upcoming 2014 Dale Farm Milk Cup in Northern Ireland.
Included in the 18-man roster are Residency alum and current Whitecaps FC first team goalkeeper Marco Carducci, alongside current Residency goalkeeper Nolan Wirth, defender Jackson Farmer, and midfielder Kianz Froese. Also included on the squad are Residency graduates Quinton Duncan and Brody Huitema, as well as Residency products Sebastian Cabrera, Alex Comsia, and Sadi Jalali.
All of the above players, except for Carducci, were at the Canadian men’s U-20 training camp this past May in Sunrise, Florida.
Facing off against Northern Ireland, China PR, and Mexico, head coach Rob Gale is using the four-team competition as a training ground for the 2015 CONCACAF U-20 Championships, which will take place early next year, and serve as the qualifiying tournament for the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup in New Zealand next summer.
“This is our only tournament as a group in preparation for qualifying in January,” said Gale. “So we aim to use it in a number of specific tactical ways and have objectives that will help us build for the future.”
Canada will open the tournament with a match against CONCACAF rivals Mexico on Monday, July 28 at Riada Stadium in Balleymoney. Gale’s squad will then face China PR in Derry on Wednesday, July 30 in before closing the tournament against the hosts Northern Ireland on Friday, August 1.