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Union Academy midfielder commits to Cal Poly

Manny Perez will be joining teammate Freeman Dwamena on the West Coast this fall

Emmanuel Perez
Matt Ralph

Former USMNT head coach Steve Sampson has another Philadelphia Union Academy player to look forward to coaching this fall with the recent verbal commitment from midfielder Emmanuel Perez.

Perez announced his decision on social media over the weekend about a month after defender Freeman Dwamena announced his own commitment to the Division 1 program.

The Florida native joined the Academy last season from FC Dallas and has scored 10 goals in 20 appearances. Most memorable was the second half hat trick he scored in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy playoffs that put the U18 team through to the quarterfinals on goal differential.

Perez graduated from YSC Academy last June, but met the age requirement to stay for a grad year and still compete in the USSDA.

The Mustangs are coming off a down season, finishing 5-9-3 in the second year under Sampson, who coached the U.S. national team from 1995-1998, the Costa Rica national team from 2002-2004 and LA Galaxy from 2004-2006. The losing season this year was the first for the program since 2011.

Cal Poly is located in San Luis Obispo, midway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. The men’s soccer team competes in the Big West Conference.