VANCOUVER, BC – Vancouver Whitecaps FC announced on Thursday that the club has signed Development Squad and Whitecaps FC BMO Academy System product Gianfranco Facchineri to an MLS Homegrown contract.
Facchineri, along with Patrick Metcalfe, become the 20th and 21st Whitecaps FC Academy products to sign an MLS Homegrown contract with the club, joining Thomas Hasal and Georges Mukumbilwa as Development Squad players who have moved up to the first team in the last year.
"This means everything to me,” said Facchineri. “Since I was seven-years-old my dream has been to be a professional footballer. My dream is to not only be a professional footballer but to have a career in football. I want to thank my parents and my sister; they are my three biggest supporters and my three biggest critics. I also want to thank every coach from youth, to the national team program, and the Whitecaps FC Academy for helping me get to this point. I’m excited to get to work.”
Whitecaps FC centre back Gianfranco Facchineri
- Featured for Whitecaps FC U-17 in 2018-19, and Development Squad in 2019
- Represented Canada at Concacaf U-17 Championship and FIFA U-17 World Cup in 2019
- 2019 Whitecaps FC BMO RESP Academy Male Player award recipient
- Developed at Windsor Ciociaro SC and Vardar SC in Ontario before joining Whitecaps FC in 2018
“Frankie is a player who has worked hard and grown since joining our club. We really like his mindset, especially his approach to training and commitment to learning,” added Whitecaps FC head coach Marc Dos Santos. “He is still young, he will have time to develop, and is someone we want to have close to the first team even if there is the possibility of him continuing his progress with the U-19s and Development Squad.”
Facchineri, 17, joined the Whitecaps FC Academy in August 2018 and made 14 starts for the U-17 and U-19 sides in the Development Academy, including playoffs. He moved up to the Development Squad in 2019, impressing against strong competition including during trips to South Korea and Mexico.
The 6-foot defender also had a busy year in international competition, co-captaining Canada at the Concacaf U-17 Championship then representing his country at the FIFA U-17 World Cup, playing every minute in both tournaments and collecting seven caps.
Facchineri’s 2019 campaign was capped off with a Whitecaps FC BMO RESP Academy Male Player recognition at the club’s year-end awards.
Prior to his arrival in Vancouver, Facchineri developed in his youth at Windsor Ciociaro SC, Windsor FC Nationals, and Vardar SC before joining Whitecaps FC in 2018. He was selected to the Ontario Provincial Team Program at the U-14 and U-15 age levels.
TRANSACTION: On January 23, 2020, Whitecaps FC signed Gianfranco Facchineri to an MLS Homegrown contract.
Position: Centre back
Weight: 185 pounds
Date of Birth: April 27, 2002 in Windsor, Ontario
Hometown: Windsor, Ontario
Citizenship: Canada, Italy
Status: Domestic, Homegrown
Youth Clubs: Windsor Ciociaro SC, Windsor FC Nationals, Vardar SC
VWFC Teams: Whitecaps FC Development Squad (’19 - ’20), WFC Academy (’18 - ’19)