The rosters for the 2018 MLS Homegrown Game were announced today, and the Philadelphia Union lead all teams by having four players named to the 18 man roster. The four players on the roster also tied a MLS record, set by Real Salt Lake in 2016.
Defenders Mark McKenzie, Aaron Trusty, and Matthew Real, along with midfielder Anthony Fontana were all named to the Homegrown Game roster that will take on Tigres UNAL U-20s in Atlanta on July 31st.
4 HOMEGROWNS!! COUNT 'EM! @markmckenzie4_ , @austheboss3, @AntFontana99, & @matt_real11 have been selected to participate in the 2018 @MLS Homegrown Game presented by @Energizer!!— Philadelphia Union (@PhilaUnion) July 12, 2018
: https://t.co/Gxp9HinGCk pic.twitter.com/ePdtiRyr6z
Per the Union’s official website:
The team, to be coached by Atlanta United Academy Director Tony Annan, features some of the league’s most accomplished young stars. The MLS Homegrown team will take on Tigres UANL’s Under-20 side on Tuesday, July 31 at 8:00 p.m. ET at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground (UDN / Twitter.com).
With four players selected for the game, the Union have matched the all-time MLS record for the most players chosen from one club in Homegrown Game history. That mark is tied with Real Salt Lake’s four players from the 2016 Homegrown Game.
Trusty makes a return to the Homegrown Game, as he was selected to last year’s game. Zach Pfeffer had previously been selected twice for the game as a member of the Union. Besides Pfeffer, the only other Union player to have been selected to play in this game was Derrick Jones.
The Homegrown Game gives MLS academies a chance to showcase their talent on a higher-profile stage than they are usually given, as the Homegrown game is played in conjunction with the MLS All-Star game. It will also be interesting to see how the team plays against the Tigres U-20 team, as they are one of the most talented U-20 squads in Liga MX.
In addition to the four Union players, the roster contains goalkeepers Sean Melvin (Vancouver Whitecaps) and JT Marcinkowski (San Jose Earthquakes); defenders Marco Farfan (Portland Timbers), Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas), Jaylin Lindsey (Sporting Kansas City), and James Sands (New York City FC); midfielders Efrain Alvarez (LA Galaxy), Chris Durkin (D.C. United), Lagos Kunga (Atlanta United), Wan Kuzain (Sporting Kansas City), Liam Fraser (Toronto FC), Cameron Lindley (Orlando City), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas), and Sebastian Saucedo (Real Salt Lake); and forwards Andrew Carleton (Atlanta United), Ben Mines (New York Red Bulls).