On Thursday, Los Angeles Galaxy announced the signing of U16 academy player Jack McBean to a homegrown contract.
McBean is the second player from the Galaxy Academy to sign with the first team. Tristan Bowen, the first, was traded to Chivas USA earlier this off-season.
The Corona del Mar High School star striker will join the Galaxy after he is done with the U.S. national team at the CONCACAF U17 Championships in Jamaica, which takes place in February.
The Championships are the qualifiers for the U17 World Cup in Mexico this summer; should the U.S. make the event, McBean will likely be a part of that team as well.
In his lone high school season, McBean partnered with current UCLA forward Reed Williams to create one of the most fearsome forward duos in Southern California last season. The pair helped the Sea Kings to the state championship game before McBean was called to academy duty with the Galaxy.
The freshman chipped in with eight goals and 11 assists in his debut season. He only played in one high school game in his sophomore campaign due national team duties.
The speedy forward had nine goals in ten games with the Galaxy U16 academy team this season before joining the U.S. residency in Florida in December. He helped the Galaxy U16 team to a nearly perfect 10-0-1 record through the first part of the season.
Given the new NCAA rules regarding amateurism, McBean will likely still find minutes with the academy teams in the same manner New York Red Bulls used Juan Agudelo last season.
Galaxy head coach Bruce Arena told reporters on Thursday: “He’s a 16-year old [striker], strong, good with his back to the goal, athletically good. We don’t get any bonus points for playing 16-, 17-, 18-year-old players. He’s now with the men. We’re going to see how that adds up in our environment.”
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