Real Monarchs SLC Duo of Ricardo Avila & Douglas Martinez Called to U-23 International Duty
HERRIMAN, Utah - The Real Monarchs SLC duo of MF Ricardo Avila and FW Douglas Martinez have been called to represent their countries for 2020 Olympic qualifiers and the Pan American Games. Avila will represent the Panama U-23s while Martinez will represent the Honduran U-23 side.
"Ricardo and Douglas have earned these call ups through their stellar play with the Monarchs this season," Real Monarchs SLC General Manager Dan Egner said. "Both have come in, adapted well, and been two of our top players this season. This is a tremendous opportunity for them to represent their respective countries, and hopefully this will lead to senior team call ups for each of them sooner rather than later."
Avila and Panama will participate in the 2020 Olympic qualifiers beginning, July 17 v. El Salvador in Panama, and July 21 in El Salvador. At the Pan American Games in Peru, Panama will face Mexico on July 29, Ecuador on August 1 and Argentina on August 4 in Group A.
Martinez and Honduras will participate in the 2020 Olympic qualifiers beginning July 19 at Nicaragua and July 21 in Honduras. Martinez will also participate in the Pan American Games in Group B, facing Jamaica on July 29, Peru on August 1 and Uruguay on August 4.
Avila, 22, has featured in nine matches - all starts - for the Monarchs this season, while scoring one goal in 745 minutes played. The Monarchs acquired Avila ahead of the 2019 season after the defensive midfielder featured prominently for Panama at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Ávila arrived with the Monarchs after appearing in two of Panama's group-stage games at last year's World Cup. Ávila played 105 minutes including 78 minutes against Tunisia and 27 minutes against England. He has also spent time with the Panamanian U-20s where he has scored four goals.
A native of Panama City, Ávila began his professional club career with Chorillo of Liga Panameña de Fútbol where he made 31 appearances across three seasons with the team, scoring five goals. After a short stint in Slovenia with FC Koper, Ávila made the move to Belgium where he featured for the KAA Gent reserve squad. Moving to CD Universitario prior to the 2018 season, the 21-year-old played 362 minutes, making four starts during the season.
Martinez, 22, is tied for the team lead in goals scored in 2019 with six having started 13 matches in his first year with the club. Acquired ahead of the 2019 season, Martinez spent the 2017-18 season with C.D.S. Vida in his second stint with the club, having featured for the Honduran side in four seasons prior to 2018 beginning in 2013 when he made his professional debut at 16-years-old. Martinez carries with him United Soccer League experience having featured for New York Red Bulls II in 2017 while on loan where he logged 485 minutes scoring one goal. Martinez totaled 1,230 minutes and three goals in his time in the Honduran top flight.
Real Monarchs SLC returns to action on Saturday, July 6 when it hosts Four-Corners rival New Mexico United at Zions Bank Stadium. Tickets to the match can be purchased by going to RealMonarchs.com or by calling 844.REAL.TIX.
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