Houston Dynamo defender Kofi Sarkodie and Dynamo Academy defender Sebastien Ibeagha have been named to the 22-player roster for the upcoming U.S. Under-23 men’s national team camp. The U-23s will train for 11 days at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., before traveling to Costa Rica to play friendlies against the Saprissa Reserves on Saturday, Jan. 21, and Alajuelense on Tuesday, Jan. 24.
“I’m very pleased with where we are at in our process,” U.S. U-23 head coach Caleb Porter said. “With three training camps remaining, I know the staff and players are hungry to get back to work after the holidays. We feel like we have a good handle on the pool after two camps, and certainly the group will become more and more clear when we get closer to qualifying.”
This will be the second U-23 camp for Sarkodie and Ibeagha. Both players were part of the December camp that was held in Lakewood Ranch, Fla.
Sarkodie previously played for the national team at the FIFA U-17 World Cup and has three caps for the U-20 national team. Ibeagha, a 2010 graduate of Fort Bend Hightower High School in the Houston area, just completed his sophomore season at Duke University. He was named to the All-ACC second team this past season after earning All-ACC freshman honors in 2010. Ibeagha has seven caps for the U-20 national team including two appearances at the CONCACAF U-20 qualifying tournament last spring.
The U.S. U-23 men’s national team was drawn into Group A of the 2012 CONCACAF Olympic Qualifying Tournament and will face Canada, Cuba and El Salvador. The teams open group play from March 22-26 at LP Field in Nashville. The two finalists from the tournament qualify for the 2012 Olympic Games in London this summer.
U.S. UNDER-23 ROSTER BY POSITION
GOALKEEPERS (2): David Bingham (San Jose Earthquakes), Zac MacMath (Philadelphia Union)
DEFENDERS (7): Gale Agbossoumonde (G.D. Estoril Praia), Sebastien Ibeagha (Duke), Kofi Sarkodie (Houston Dynamo), Zarek Valentin (Montreal Impact), Jorge Villafaña (Chivas USA), Andrew Wenger (Duke), Sheanon Williams (Philadelphia Union)
MIDFIELDERS (9): Isaac Acuña (Mérida; Calexico), Joe Corona (Club Tijuana), Mikkel Diskerud (Stabæk), Dilly Duka (Columbus Crew), Jared Jeffrey (Mainz, Germany), Sebastian Lletget (West Ham United F.C.), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia Union), Kelyn Rowe (UCLA), Michael Stephens (LA Galaxy)
FORWARDS (4): Freddy Adu (Philadelphia Union), Josh Gatt (Molde, Norway), Jack McInerney (Philadelphia Union), Tony Taylor (Atletico Clube de Portugal)