Real Salt Lake GK David Ochoa Called to the U.S. for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup
SANDY, Utah - U.S. U-20 National Team Head Coach Tab Ramos called in Real Salt Lake and GK David Ochoa as part of the 21-man roster for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Poland from May 23 to June 15.
A Real Salt Lake Academy product, Ochoa joins eight other MLS players on the World Cup roster, which also includes fellow RSL Academy products Richie Ledezma (PSV Eindhoven) and Sebastian Soto (Hannover 96). The U.S. kicks off the tournament Friday, May 24 against Ukraine (12:30 p.m. MT; FS1), faces Nigeria on Monday, May 27 (12:30 p.m. MT; FS1) and wraps up the group stage on Thursday, May 30 vs. Qatar (12:30 p.m. MT; FS2).
"It's an honor to get to represent the U.S. at the World Cup," Ochoa said. "I'm proud and excited - as a group, we've worked really hard over the last two years and I'm really looking forward to it."
Ochoa, 18, signed with RSL prior to the 2019 season. He made his professional debut in 2018 with the Real Monarchs as an Academy call-up on April 22, 2018 and has since made seven starts in 2019 for the club in USL Championship. This season he has a 2-3-2 record with two shutouts and a 1.71 GAA.
"It's a great opportunity to represent your country on the international level, but it's also a great opportunity for him to represent himself, his family and Real Salt Lake," RSL Head Coach Mike Petke said. "The opportunity to play against the best players in the world should give him such confidence and motivation to continue to improve so that this is not the last time that he gets called into a U.S. camp."
In 2017 the Oxnard, California native appeared in 14 matches for the Real Salt Lake Academy U-17s and 17 for the U-19s. He helped the U.S. contingent qualify for the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup, earning shutouts in both matches he appeared in, including a 1-0 shutout of Honduras in the CONCACAF Championship semifinal round.
"It is wonderful to see that all of the hard work that David has put in while here at RSL is paying off with a call up for the World Cup," Real Salt Lake General Manager Craig Waibel said. "He continues the tradition set two years ago by five other homegrown players and we wish him nothing but the best in Poland."
Ochoa becomes the seventh product of the Real Salt Lake Academy to represent the U.S. at the U-20 World Cup, joining DF/FW Jordan Allen in 2015; and DFs Justen Glad, Aaron Herrera and Danilo Acosta and FWs Brooks Lennon and Sebastian Saucedo in 2017. In addition, Luis Gil (2013), Freddy Adu (2007) and Chris Seitz (2007) all appeared at the U-20 World Cup as players at Real Salt Lake, while current RSL players DF Tony Beltran (2007) and GK Nick Rimando (1999) also appeared for the U.S. in the tournament and DF Marcelo Silva (2009) played for Uruguay.
2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup Roster by Position (Club; Hometown; U-20 Caps/Goals)
GOALKEEPERS (3): C.J. Dos Santos (Benfica/POR; Foxchase, Pa.; 2/0), David Ochoa (Real Salt Lake; Oxnard, Calif.; 4/0), Brady Scott (Köln/GER; Petaluma, Calif.; 9/0)
DEFENDERS (6): Sergino Dest (Ajax/NED; Almere-Stad, Netherlands; 8/1), Chris Gloster (Hannover 96/GER; Montclair, N.J.; 11/0), Aboubacar Keita (Richmond Kickers; Columbus, Ohio; 2/0), Mark McKenzie (Philadelphia Union; Bear, Del.; 10/3), Matthew Real (Philadelphia Union; Drexel Hill, Pa.; 10/0), Chris Richards (Bayern Munich/GER; Birmingham, Ala.; 8/0)
MIDFIELDERS (6): Edwin Cerrillo (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas; 0/0), Chris Durkin (D.C. United; Glen Allen, Va.; 2/0), Richard Ledezma (PSV Eindhoven/NED; Phoenix, Ariz.; 4/0), Alex Mendez (Freiburg/GER; Los Angeles, Calif.; 15/8), Paxton Pomykal (FC Dallas; Highland Village, Texas; 9/3), Brandon Servania (FC Dallas; Dallas, Texas; 8/2)
FORWARDS (6): Ayo Akinola (Toronto FC/CAN; Brampton, Ont.; 12/9), Konrad De La Fuente (Barcelona/ESP; Miami, Fla.; 2/1), Ulysses Llanez (Wolfsburg/GER; Lynwood, Calif.; 11/7), Justin Rennicks (New England Revolution; South Hamilton, Mass.; 13/6), Sebastian Soto (Hannover 96/GER; San Diego, Calif.; 5/2), Tim Weah (Celtic FC/SCO; Rosedale, N.Y.; 0/0)
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