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MLS NEXT Apr 10, 2023

MLS academies capture Generation adidas Cup U15 and U17 titles for 2nd straight year

NEW YORK – For the second consecutive year, MLS academies swept the Generation adidas Cup, as the Philadelphia Union emerged victorious in the U-17 age group, while Austin FC captured the U-15 age group title at the 2023 edition of the event.

MLS academies have won five of the past six titles at the Generation adidas Cup dating back to the 2019 tournament and Sunday’s victories marked the first Generation adidas Cup title for the Philadelphia Union since 2012 and the first in club history for Austin FC.

In the U-17 final, Philadelphia capped a strong week with a 1-0 victory over FC Dallas, courtesy of a Devon DeCorte goal from the penalty spot in the 24th minute. The Union academy played up a man for the final 14 minutes of the match, as FC Dallas midfielder Mikey Murphy was shown his second yellow card. However, Dallas continued their attack, stringing together two good chances in the waning minutes of the match. Philadelphia did not falter and as the final whistle was blown, the club celebrated a well-earned title.

Philadelphia’s 2012 Generation adidas Cup victory was led by current first-team head coach Jim Curtin and featured former MLS and United States Men’s National Team goalkeeper Zack Steffen in net.

Watch Highlights of Philadelphia’s U-17 Victory | HERE

Austin’s victory in the U-15 final went down to the wire, as they emerged a winner over the Philadelphia Union via a 7-6 margin in kicks from the penalty mark following a 1-1 draw in regulation. For the second game in a row, Austin goalkeeper Nicolas Arstizabal stepped up in a shootout, as he stopped Philadelphia’s seventh penalty of the day to secure the victory for his club.

Austin FC opened up the scoring in the first half, when the Philadelphia ‘keeper could not control a back pass from a defender to give Los Verdes a 1-0 lead. Just three minutes into the second half, Philadelphia leveled the score on a Jamir Johnson tap-in at the far post following a strong passing sequence by the Union. Johnson’s goal was just the second conceded by Austin FC in its seven games of Generation adidas Cup action. Neither club was able to score in two extra time periods, forcing deciding kicks from the penalty mark and Arstizabal’s final save was the difference maker for Austin FC.

Watch Highlights of Austin FC’s U-15 Victory | HERE

MLS also announced the tournament’s award winners in the U-17 and U-15 age groups. Austin FC midfielder Viggo Ortiz was named the U-15 Generation adidas Cup Most Valuable Player after guiding Austin to their first-ever title. KRC Genk’s (Belgium) Lucca Kiaba was named the Generation adidas Cup Best Goalkeeper for his standout performance throughout the competition. The U-15 Generation adidas Cup Top Scorer was split three ways between Gustavo Caraballo (Orlando City SC), Julian Hall (New York Red Bulls), and Tanner Rosborough (New York Red Bulls), who each scored four goals.

In the U-17 age group, Columbus Crew and U.S. U-17 Men’s Youth National Team midfielder Taha Habroune was sensational, earning U-17 Generation adidas Cup Most Valuable Player honors. In net, FC Dallas’ Julian Eyestone was named Generation adidas Cup Best Goalkeeper after guiding the club to the final against the Philadelphia Union. Six players in the U-17 age group tied for the Generation adidas Cup Top Scorer – Christopher Aquino (Seattle Sounders FC), Felipe Gabriel Felipe Teresa (Flamengo), Gregory Jervier (FC Cincinnati), Jared Salazar (FC Dallas), Nayrobi Vargas (FC Dallas), and Devin Zachry (Strikers FC). All six players scored three goals in the group and knockout stages.

(Photo Credit: Major League Soccer)