NEW YORK – Major League Soccer today announced the 2017 Generation adidas class, which includes the first Generation adidas Canada signings, that will enter the professional ranks through the 2017 MLS SuperDraft presented by adidas on Friday, Jan. 13 in Los Angeles (12 p.m. PT on whitecapsfc.com).
The league also announced the signings of five additional college players ahead of the SuperDraft and further adidas MLS Player Combine invitees.
Five players make up the entire 2017 Generation adidas class, two of which are Generation adidas Canada signings. The three Generation adidas players include UCLA forward Abu Danladi, who despite appearing in only 11 games in 2016, posted a career-high seven goals and finished second on the Bruins with 16 points, while being named to the MAC Hermann Trophy Watch List.
Joining Danladi is UCLA teammate and sophomore midfielder Jackson Yueill, who led the Pac-12 in assists with 11, fifth best in the NCAA, and earned All-Pac-12 First Team honors.
Rounding out the group is Syracuse University centre back Miles Robinson, who was named ACC Defensive Player of the Year and a MAC Hermann Trophy semifinalist after a standout season that saw his inclusion on the U.S. U-20 Men’s National Team roster for the 2016 Four Nations Tournament.
Two Canadian youth internationals, FC Edmonton midfielder Shamit Shome and former ANB Futbol forward Adonijah Reid (pictured) make up the inaugural Generation adidas Canada class. Shome made his professional debut with his hometown club in 2016 after graduating from the FC Edmonton Academy, making 26 appearances while playing a key role with the Canada U-20 Men’s National Team. Reid, a native of Brampton, ON, has been a part of the Canadian Youth National Team player pool since 2014.
Generation adidas is a joint program between MLS and adidas that is dedicated to developing exceptional domestic talent in the U.S. and Canada in a professional environment. Each year, a handful of top domestic collegiate underclassmen and youth national team players are signed by the league and placed in the SuperDraft. Generation adidas players do not count against an MLS team’s salary budget.
Ahead of the SuperDraft, MLS has also signed college seniors Brandon Aubrey (Notre Dame), Julian Gressel (Providence College), Zeiko Lewis (Boston College), Brian Wright (University of Vermont) and underclassman Jeremy Ebobisse (Duke).
In addition, eight college seniors have been extended invites to the MLS Combine: Jalen Brown (Xavier), Stefan Cleveland (University of Louisville), Matej Dekovic (UNC Charlotte), Marcus Epps (USF), Tucker Hume (UNC), Iman Mafi (Clemson University), Jo Vetle Rimstad (Radford University), Andrew Wheeler-Omiunu (Harvard University).