(Via MLS) – Homegrown Players are having an even greater impact in both Major League Soccer and for their respective national teams than ever before, with the collective class producing all-time highs in goals scored, assists and minutes played during the 2017 season. With a league-record 101 players currently active in MLS, Homegrown Players are making increasingly larger contributions on the field for both club and country as the next generation of domestic soccer stars
Montreal Impact and Canada National Team forward Anthony Jackson-Hamel leads all MLS Homegrown Players with nine goals scored this season, while his four assists rank tied for second among the group. The 24-year-old also has three goals scored over six caps in what has been a breakout year for Canada. New England Revolution and U.S. Men’s National Team forward Juan Agudelo, meanwhile, ranks second among Homegrown Players with a career-high eight goals scored this season, while Columbus Crew SC midfielder Wil Trapp leads all Homegrown Players with five assists in MLS play.
Seven Homegrown Player products were included on the United States title-winning 2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup roster, including reigning MLS Rookie of the Year Jordan Morris (Seattle Sounders FC) and two-time MLS All-Star Kellyn Acosta (FC Dallas). The duo both played prominent roles for the United States this season and could figure into Bruce Arena’s plans for the 2018 FIFA World Cup roster should the U.S. qualify in October.
In addition to Jackson-Hamel, Vancouver Whitecaps FC midfielder Alphonso Davies starred for Canada at the Gold Cup, winning the tournament’s Young Player Award. The 16-year-old was also named to the tournament Best XI team and finished in a three-way tie for the Golden Boot as the top scorer.
Additionally, five Homegrown Players are currently starting at goalkeeper, as U.S. Men’s National Team players Bill Hamid (D.C. United) and Jesse Gonzalez (FC Dallas) join the group of Tyler Deric (Houston Dynamo), Matt Lampson (Chicago Fire) and Jon Kempin(LA Galaxy) as MLS starters.
Homegrown Player Production