NEW YORK (August 10, 2015) – The New York Cosmos announced today that the club has signed U.S. U-17 youth international Alexis Velela. As per club policy, terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“I’m very happy about joining the New York Cosmos,” said Velela. “I spent a week with the team on trial last month and felt really comfortable with the environment. I feel this is where I can continue to develop as a player.
“Being able to train with world-class stars such as Raúl and Senna will definitely help me to become a complete soccer player.”
Velela, 17, is a San Diego, Calif. native who can play several positions (defender, full back and central midfield) and has also been part of the U.S. youth national team program since 2011. He started every match for the U.S. U-17 team in the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship and also previously appeared in tournaments such as the 2013 Delle Nazioni in Italy and Copa Mexico de Naciones in Mexico.
Velela is expected to be named to the U.S. squad for the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Chile (along with teammate Haji Wright) this October and will report to the Cosmos following the tournament.
Velela joins the club from San Diego Nomads Soccer Club. He played on the club’s U.S. Development Academy U15/16 team and was captain of the Cal South 98 ODP/Pro+ Team in 2011 and 2012.
“Alexis is an exciting prospect with great potential,” said Cosmos head coach Giovanni Savarese. “He is a young player with strong technical qualities and is capable of playing in multiple positions. We are delighted to have signed him.”