Toronto FC wingback Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty and midfielder Kosi Thompson highlight Canada's 60-man provisional roster ahead of next month’s CONCACAF Men’s Under-20 Championship.
The provisional list features some other familiar names with a Borjan, Bunbury, De Rosario, Herdman and Bontis.
The Canadian roster will be whittled down to 18 outfield players and two goalkeepers ahead of the 20-team tournament slated for June 18 to July 3 in Honduras.
Canada has been drawn in Group E with the U.S., Cuba, and St. Kitts and Nevis. The top three in the group advance to the knockout round of 16.
The CONCACAF tournament serves as a qualifier for both the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia and 2024 Paris Olympics. The top four CONCACAF teams will book their ticket to the U-20 World Cup with the two finalists qualifying for the Olympics.
Goalkeepers Adisa De Rosario and Dino Bontis are the sons of former Canadian scoring star Dwayne De Rosario and Canada Soccer president Nick Bontis, respectively. Nikola Borjan, also a 'keeper, is the younger brother of Canadian No. 1 Milan Borjan.
Mataeo Bunbury is the son of former Canadian star forward Alex Bunbury and younger brother of Nashville SC's Teal Bunbury. Midfielder Jay Herdman is the son of Canadian head coach John Herdman.
The younger Herdman, born in 2004, is in the Vancouver Whitecaps system while Adisa De Rosario is with Toronto FC II. Bontis is with Forge FC of the CPL and Bunbury, who turns 17 next month, is a product of the Sporting Kansas City academy who plays for Sporting Kansas City II in the USL Championship.
Like his older brother, Nikola Borjan is with Red Star Belgrade but with the under-19 squad.
Included on the provisional roster are defenders Justin Smith, who has already made the bench for France's Nice, and Jamie Knight-Lebel who is with England's Bristol City. Midfielder Gabriel Pellegrino is with Germany's SC Freiburg while Jesse Costa is with German side VfL Wolfsburg's academy.
Coach Mauro Biello held a U-20 camp in Costa Rica in April, the first Canadian men's youth camp in more than two years due to the pandemic.
The 2020 CONCACAF U-20 Championship was cancelled due to COVID-19. The U.S. won the 2018 tournament, downing Mexico 2-0 in the final.
The Canadian men have missed out on the last nine Olympics, last competing in 1984 when they finished sixth after losing to Brazil in a quarterfinal penalty shootout.
Canada has not taken part in the FIFA U-20 Men's World Cup since it hosted it in 2007, failing to advance after losing all three group matches.
The provisional roster provides a glimpse of young Canada-eligble talent with players drawn from clubs in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Croatia, England, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Serbia and Spain as well as North America.
It also features players from all three MLS teams or their academies as well as the CPL's Forge FC, Cavalry FC, Pacific FC, Valour FC and York United.
Canada's Provisional Roster
Goalkeepers: Ben Alexander, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2; Max Anchor, Vancouver Whitecaps FC; Samuel Banfi, CF Montreal academy; Dino Bontis, Forge FC (CPL); Nikola Borjan, Red Star Belgrade U-19 (Serbia); Adisa De Rosario, Toronto FC II; Owen Goodman, Crystal Palace (England).
Defenders: Noah Abatneh, SS Lazio Roma (Italy); Jefferson Alphonse, CF Montreal academy; Elage Bah, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2; Renaud Caron, CF Montreal academy; Loic Cloutier, CF Montreal academy; Tyler Crawford, Columbus Crew SC; Luc de Fougerolles, Fulham FC (England); Keesean Ferdinand, CF Montreal; Kobe Franklin, Toronto FC II; Joshua Gordon, Toronto FC II; Jamie Knight-Lebel, Bristol City FC (England); Kundai Mawoko, Toronto FC II; Joshue Ndakala, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2; Adam Pearlman, Toronto FC II; Justin Smith, OGC Nice (France); Eric White, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2.
Midfielders: Theo Afework, Nuremburg (Germany); Jordan Alvarez, Boavista FC (Portugal); Paul Amedune, North Texas SC; Jean-Aniel Assi, Cavalry FC (CPL); Georgi Atanassov, Arda Kardzhali (Bulgaria); Matteo Campagna, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2; Matthew Catavolo, Valour FC (CPL); Jesse Costa, VfL Wolfsburg (Germany); Antoine Coupland, HNK Rijeka (Croatia); Lucas Dias, Sporting CP U-23 (Portugal); Tomas Giraldo, CF Montreal; Kamron Habibullah, Pacific FC (CPL); Mael Henry, CF Montreal academy; Jay Herdman, Vancouver Whitecaps FC 2; Jahkeele Marshall-Rutty, Toronto FC; Dieu-Merci Michel, Vitoria Guimares (Portugal); Shyon Omrani, Vitoria Setubal FC (Portugal); Gabriel Pellegrino, SC Freiburg (Germany); Max Piepgrass, Cavalry FC (CPL); Kwasi Poku, Forge FC (CPL); Jeronimo Sabbatasso, Empoli FC (Italy); Nathan-Dylan Saliba, CF Montreal; Matteo Schiavoni, CF Montreal academy; Hugo Tavares, FC Pacos de Ferreira (Portugal); Kosi Thompson, Toronto FC; Rida Zouhir, CF Montreal.
Forwards: Mataeo Bunbury, Sporting Kansas City II; Tiago Coimbra, SE Palmeiras (Brazil); Mouhamadou Kane, York United FC (CPL); Luca Koleosho, RCD Espanyol (Spain); Ronan Kratt, SSV Ulm 1846 (Germany); Hugo Mbongue, Toronto FC II; Federico Rose, Velez Sarsfield (Argentina); Alexander Sarakinis, FC Volos U-19 (Greece); Lukas Sarakinis, Bolton Wanderers (England); Jules-Anthony Vilsaint, Royal Antwerp FC (Belgium); Lowell Wright, York United FC (CPL).
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This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 18, 2022
Neil Davidson, The Canadian Press