The 19-year-old has become a regular on Toronto's back line after signing as the club's first ever homegrown player in 2010.Toronto FC announced Tuesday that it has locked up teenaged defender Doneil Henry to a long-term deal that should keep the player at the club for the foreseeable future.
Henry, 19, first signed with the Reds on Aug. 26, 2010, as a 17-year-old defensive prospect. At that point, he had already appeared for TFC in two competitive matches, as he was in the starting lineup as an amateur player for Toronto in the Canadian Championship finale and a CONCACAF Champions League match versus C.D. Motagua earlier that season.
Since signing, Henry has gained increasing time in the back four, playing either as a central defender or a right back. He has recently earned a starting spot as the latter with regular right back Richard Eckersley shifting into the middle of the defence.
“This is another positive step for our football club, signing another promising young defender for the long term,” TFC head coach Paul Mariner said in a press release. “Doneil possess a great amount of skill and the scary part is he is only 19 years old.
"He has proven to be an important part of our club and will continue to be for years to come.”
Henry becomes the second homegrown player to re-sign with Toronto, following in the footsteps of fellow defender Ashtone Morgan, who inked a new deal with the club last month. Both players have earned caps with the full national team since stepping up to TFC's first team.
“I’m very proud to re-sign with Toronto FC and ensure I will remain here for the next few years,” Henry said. “I have learned a lot in my time with the Academy and in the First Team. Being from Brampton and playing for my home club is a dream come true and I’m happy to be able to continue on with Toronto FC.”