Youth Report: Chivas USA Academy Begins Season

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 08: Well, the first team and reserves couldn't beat the Sounders this weekend, but the U18s did. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Got a few news items for you concerning the Chivas USA Academy. The Baby Goats began their 2012-13 season this past weekend with games against the Portland Timbers Academy and Seattle Sounders Academy. It started with matches for the U16s and U18s against Portland, which is new to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy set-up this season, and Chivas weren't afraid to put the new kids on the block in their place. The U18s defeated the Timbers 5-0, with goals from Julio Chavez, Romario Lomeli, Michael Gonzalez, and a pair from Daniel Moreno. The U16s followed that up with a 2-2 draw against their Portland counterparts, with both goals coming from Caleb Calvert.

The next day, the U18s got their second win in as many games with a 4-2 win over the Sounders. Chavez and Moreno were again on the scoresheet for Chivas. And the U16s repeated their previous scoreline with a 2-2 draw with Seattle, with goals from Calvert and Ryo Fujii.

On one hand, going against fellow MLS Academies is a good litmus test for Chivas, but the pressure is a bit off against these teams as they are not part of Chivas' division. The Goats play in the SoCal division, which is a very competitive division in the USSDA.

In other Academy news, a group of Chivas Academy members are getting U.S. Youth National Team call-ups. Homegrown signing Marky Delgado and forward Ben Spencer were both called up to the U18 YNT, for a training camp currently underway in the Netherlands. Included in the camp is a friendly with the Dutch U18 team, so that should be great experience for the young Americans. Congrats to Delgado and Spencer for the call-up!

Meanwhile, four Chivas Academy players were called up to the U15 USYNT camp, which took place last week at the Home Depot Center. Josh Perez, a highly touted Academy member, joined fellow forward Jorge Ruiz, midfielder Alejandro Vergara, and defender Hugo Arellano. Chivas USA joined the New York Red Bulls with the most invited players to this latest training camp. Congrats to the quartet!

By the way, over at Top Drawer Soccer, J.R. Eskilson raved about Perez's camp, proclaiming him, "arguably, the most promising prospect in the U.S. youth national team structure right now at only 14 years of age."

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

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