Liam Mackenzie selected to MLS NEXT All-Star Game


VANCOUVER, BC – MLS NEXT announced on Tuesday that midfielder Liam Mackenzie has been selected to the third annual MLS NEXT All-Star Game presented by Allstate. The game will showcase 44 of the best young players in an East vs. West matchup at Historic Crew Stadium in Columbus, Ohio on Tuesday, July 23 at 8:30 a.m. PT and stream live on YouTube. Admission to the game is free, as fans in Columbus can watch the future stars of MLS take center stage during MLS All-Star week.

Mackenzie, 17, had an outstanding season with the Whitecaps FC BMO MLS Academy U-17 team, helping them qualify for the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs where they made a run to the quarterfinals. This past April, the native of Comox, BC signed his first professional contract with Whitecaps FC 2.

In the professional ranks in MLS NEXT Pro this season, Mackenzie has made seven appearances and three starts, recording one assist.

During preseason, Mackenzie was the youngest player at Whitecaps FC’s MLS preseason camp in Coachella Valley, California, featuring as a substitute in preseason matches for the first team against San Jose Earthquakes and Orange County SC.

Mackenzie first joined the Whitecaps FC BMO Academy as a 13-year-old in August 2020 after playing with Vancouver Island Wave in the EA SPORTS BC Soccer Premier League. During his time with the academy, the youngster captained both the U-15 and U-17 sides and took part in three Generation adidas Cups with both age groups. Mackenzie has been a recipient of several Whitecaps FC BMO Academy awards, including the 2022 U-15 Player of the Year award and Academy Best XI, and the 2023 U-17 Student Athlete award and Cornerstone award.

On the international stage, Mackenzie has represented Canada at the U-17 level, playing a year up when he began competing with the side. The midfielder started three of his five appearances at the 2023 Concacaf U-17 Championship, adding a goal and an assist as the team reached the semifinals of the tournament. Mackenzie was also an alternate for Canada at the 2023 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Indonesia.

MLS NEXT and Allstate will provide the players with unique opportunities during MLS All-Star Week, which will include a full slate of programming events and activities in advance of the match. The players will be fully immersed in MLS All-Star Week festivities, which include team training, the All-Star Skills Challenge presented by AT&T on July 23, and the MLS All-Star Game on July 24. Each MLS NEXT All-Star team will also conduct their own training sessions leading up to their match on Tuesday morning.

The 44 players were selected following the conclusion of the 2024 MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs and Showcase. To be eligible for selection, players must have been born between 2007-2009, have competed in the MLS NEXT regular season, and played in at least one of the MLS NEXT premier events this season – MLS NEXT Fest, MLS NEXT Flex, Generation adidas Cup, or the MLS NEXT Cup Playoffs and Showcase.

Launched in 2020, MLS NEXT is the most elite platform for youth player development in North America. With a commitment to innovation and providing access and representation, MLS NEXT players receive the best training and coaching as they prepare for their futures, both in soccer and in life. Throughout a season, MLS NEXT hosts four marquee events across the country, including the Generation adidas Cup, which features MLS academies playing against the top international clubs. Membership for the 2023-24 season included 29 MLS academies, 114 Elite Academies (143 total clubs), 677 teams and over 15,000 players across the U.S. and Canada. Official partners of MLS NEXT include adidas, Allstate, and DoorDash. For more information about MLS NEXT, visit