Inspired by the recent American success in Europe, we want to check in with our Academy graduates and see how these alums are doing across the pond.
There may be a few players that you never knew were once a hoop.
Born and raised in Little Elm, Weston McKennie is a household name at this point and one of the top players for the USMNT. Weston has become a favorite for Andre Pirlo’s Juventus with 15 appearances across Serie A and Champions League. McKennie has also been taking notes from teammate Cristiano Ronaldo by scoring two goals and assisting two more. Weston was FCD’s “one that got away” in the sense that we never signed him to a homegrown contract, which has Dallas losing out on quite a bit of money. It’s not all lost though, Dallas will receive a small percentage of the transfer fees per FIFA’s guidelines.
It is safe to say Mckennie is FC Dallas’ most successful academy product out there. Below is Weston pictured coaching a young prospect, how nice of him.
Chris Richards is breaking through at Bayern Munich in this 2020/21 campaign. With 7 appearances and bagging two assists, Richards has begun to cement himself as a regular on the German side. While he is still technically a Bayern II player (their reserve side that plays in the 3rd division), Chris Richards seems to be on track for a full senior promotion next season.
Unlike Mckennie, FC Dallas signed Richards to a homegrown contract right before his departure to Germany, which means future money is on the way for FCD if he continues on his developmental path. Chris is playing for one of the best teams in the world and is certainly in the national team picture.
Our beloved son, Reggie Cannon, is making his own waves for the Portuguese side Boavista. Playing every minute of the season for them, he has quickly become a top right back in Liga NOS.
Word has it that Benfica and a few French teams have their eyes on him, so it looks like Reggie is climbing the European ladder fairly fast.
Back in 2014, Niko Hamalainen left the FC Dallas academy for QPR, where he resides today. After multiple loan moves, including one to MLS side LAFC for the 2019 season, Niko may finally be finding his feet.
Currently, the 23-year-old has 15 appearances in the Championship.
Ramiro Funes Mori
Did you know the Villareal defender and Argentinian national was once an FC Dallas academy player? Ramiro, and his brother Rogelio of CF Monterrey, played for the Dallas academy back in 2008, so technically we can claim them. Ramiro has 7 appearances on the season and sees Villareal in 4th in La Liga.
Johan Gomez left the FC Dallas academy for Portugal last year to join the Porto u19s. The 19-year-old has since been promoted to Porto B, who plays in the second division of Portugal, and has 10 appearances with a goal to his name.
Johan, like many before him, decided not to wait on a homegrown contract from an MLS side, and it seems to be working in his favor.
Another Texan native not signed to a homegrown contract, Christian Cappis was shining at the Danish club Hobro IK, until it took a turn for the worse. Cappis was a bright spot for a relegated Hobro and even got called into a USMNT camp, but after a work visa mix-up, Christian found himself deported back to the US. Christian is now back and playing for Hobro in the 2nd division.
Shaft Brewer Jr
Shaft Brewer Jr left FCD in 2017 to join the Red Bull Leipzig u19s in Germany. After bouncing around on loan across the US, Brewer finds himself signed for Fram Larvik, a 3rd division Norwegian side.
Charlie Kelman, who has recently become an interesting prospect for the national team, currently plays for Queens Park Rangers in the Championship in England.
After spending his youth days in Dallas, Kelman has moved from Southend to QPR where he has made 8 appearances for the English side.
Tomkinson was a part of the FC Dallas u13 academy before joining Solar SC, and now the Norwich u23s in England. Can we claim him? Maybe, I mean he was born in Plano, so we’ll take it. The center back currently has 15 appearances for the English side and we can only hope for a senior call-up in his future.
Shaq Moore, the outside back for Tenerife in Spain’s second division, was with FCD for a small stint in his youth career before heading over to Spain. He currently has 19 appearances and an assist.
News broke this week that five FC Dallas players will be traveling to Bayern Munich to train with their side as part of the partnership between FCD and Bayern Munich. The players are: Edwin Cerrillo, Thomas Roberts, Dante Sealy, Justin Che, and Brandon Servania. Who will be the next Chris Richards to be apart of the FCD-FCB partnership?
Surprised by some? Did I miss a player?
Are you just as excited to add Bryan Reynolds to this list as I am?
Featured Image: juvefc.com