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Six League1 Ontario Alumni Called To Canada U-20 Team

By OSA News, 08/24/16, 2:30PM EDT


Canada Soccer has announced a 20-player squad for an upcoming Men's U-20 camp and series of international matches. The two away matches take place in Costa Rica, host for the 2017 CONCACAF Men's Under-20 Championship.

Six of those players are alumni from League1 Ontario programs.

The camp will start in Toronto before the group heads to San José, Costa Rica on August 30. Canada will then face their CONCACAF rivals in a pair of Men's U-20 International Friendly matches on September 1 and 3. The camp and matches were originally scheduled for May, but were postponed after a volcano eruption forced flight restrictions to Costa Rica.

"This camp gives us an opportunity to assess some players that have been in a European environment," said Rob Gale, Canada Soccer's Men's National U-20 Team Coach. The camp will help the team prepare for next year's CONCACAF youth competition, but also "assess the players long term for our Men's National Team program."

Of those invited, three are making their debut in the national youth program: Zachary Brault-Guillard (Olympique Lyonnais), Matthew Constant (University of New Mexico), and Kris Twardek (Millwall FC). The most experienced players in the group are Kadin Chung (Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2), Duwayne Ewart (Toronto FC II), and Ballou Tabla (FC Montréal), all of whom have already profited from more than 90 days each in Canada Soccer's men's national youth program.

Canada's 19 players are all born 1997 or later, making them eligible for next year's CONCACAF and FIFA U-20 competitions. The players will all travel to Toronto from their professional clubs and/or colleges from eight different countries including Canada.

Next year's CONCACAF Men's Under-20 Championship runs 17 February to 5 March in Costa Rica. From 12 nations, the top four will qualify for the FIFA U-20 World Cup Korea Republic 2017 from 20 May to 11 June.

Canada Soccer’s Men’s EXCEL Program channels our nation’s exceptional players into the best soccer environments. The Canada Soccer Pathway works in collaboration with our provincial and territory partners as well as the professional clubs and academies. For Canada’s elite players, the program emphasizes player development on the pathway to representing Canada’s Men’s National Team in international soccer.