Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Young Revs

This is a segment that we will be trying to update quite frequently. Although the Revolution Academy is in it's very early stages, there are still some players that we can focus on. We hope to get a better picture, and more in depth analysis into the Academy as we move forward into the future. Any contributions to this segment would be greatly appreciated.

For now however there are some young players to be very optimistic about. We will start with the two young Gambian players, Kenny Mansally and Sainey Nyassi. Both of these players were scouted by the Revs, and ultimately signed after the U-20 World Cup last summer (2007). After only making brief cameo appearances for the club at the end of last season, the two have made dramatic impacts for the senior club already at their young age (both 19 years old).

Mansally (striker) has shown his ability to work off the ball, and create space up front for the midfield to move through. His willingness to go at the goal is also encouraging. He showed signs of goal scoring in the preseason, but has yet to make a huge impact on the score sheet. He has scored just two goals this season in 11 games, but when you watch his contributions on the field, you understand just how valuable he has been in opening up space for Adam Christman and Kheli Dube.

Nyassi has been equally, if not more impressive this season. As an impressively athletic right midfielder, he has shown his willingness to run at defenders in MLS and wreak havoc up and down the right sideline. His speed and athleticism have couple with his strong technical ability to allow him to open up vast amounts of space for the likes of Shalrie and Ralston to dominate the middle of the field. He has been proficient in winning the byline, and setting up many goals and scoring chances for the strikers on the field. One can only imagine how many goals Twellman could have netted this year, if healthy, with the balls being swung in from Nyassi. Nyassi, like Mansally, has 2 goals and 1 assist on the season so far.

Another young player who has begun to contribute for the team is left back Amaechi Igwe (20 years old). The USA youth international has shown at times his willingness to attack from the back, and stretch the field with long attacking runs. His defensive postures sometimes finds him out of position, and left trailing the attack, but his willingness to play physical and use his athleticism seems to have Nicol impressed, as well as the fans who have big hopes for the young defender. He was drafted by the club in the '07 Superdraft.

Two little known American players were also acquired by the Revs in the off-season. Former Valencia youth player Brandon Manzonelli (18 years old) decided to make his way stateside after trialling for Man City and Blackburn in the BPL. The young American starlet signed with Valencia at the age of 16, and had great success with their U-18 squad. The attacking midfielder signed a development contract with the Revs in May and has since seen time on the reserve team, and for the senior team in both USOC matches.

The other young American player is 19 year old midfielder Brandon Tyler. The defensive midfielder signed a development contract with the Revs in April of this year after spending much of last year training with Uruguayan club Centro Atletico Fenix. He has also spent time with the reserves, and found time in both USOC matches.

21 year old Costa Rican striker, Argenis Fernandez was signed by the team in the off season. While he failed to make an impact with the club this season, he was loaned out to Costa Rican power LD Alejuelense for the remainder of the season. His future with the Revs may seems a bit uncertain now, but he also showed his ability at the U-20 World Cup last season like his two Gambian teammates.

In the future this segment will be reserved mostly for youth players who have yet to become regulars with the Senior team. Right now it is nice to look at the team and point out just how many good young players they have. Nyassi, Mansally and Igwe already look to be future staples with the team. While Manzonelli, Tyler and Fernandez are also very talented players who could find themselves contributing to the team next year or the season after. It is exciting to see the forward thinking of Revs personnel management, and hopefully we will have good news about talented young players coming through the academy soon.

As stated above, please feel free to contribute any information about the Academy players and younger players in the organization.

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