New York City FC flies to Abu Dhabi this evening with the official 30 man traveling party as the Club’s 2019 preseason gets underway.
In addition to training, The Boys in Blue will take on FC Copenhagen and AIK in friendly matches on February 3 and February 8 respectively.
Offseason acquisitions Luis Barraza, Keaton Parks and Tony Rocha make the journey, as well as returning loanee, Ebenezer Ofori and the Club’s newest Homegrown signing, Justin Haak.
In addition, five NYCFC Academy players will join the first team in Abu Dhabi: 2018 Academy Player of the Year Nico Benalcazar is joined by Alex Rando, Tayvon Gray, Vejlko Petkovic and Dante Polvara.
Barraza’s fellow SuperDraft pick Adbi Mohamed is also traveling after the defender was selected as NYCFC’s second round pick at the 2019 MLS SuperDraft.
Elsewhere, the squad is comprised of players returning including 2018’s Defensive Player of the Year Anton Tinnerholm, Newcomer of the Year Ismael Tajouri-Shradi and Team MVP, Maxi Moralez.
Sean Johnson and Jonathan Lewis will join the team when their international duty with the U.S. Men’s National Team wraps after the friendly vs. Costa Rica on February 2.
Sporting Director Claudio Reyna commented on the upcoming trip: “This preseason will challenge our team in many different ways. We’ll experience different locations, venues and teams that will push us physically, mentally and tactically. We couldn’t be more excited to begin our preseason in Abu Dhabi.”
Head Coach Domènec Torrent continued: “FC Copenhagen and AIK will provide a challenging set of matches against two teams that regularly compete in the Champions League and Europa League. Our players will benefit greatly from these tests early on in the preseason as we look to mold the identity of our team heading into the 2019 season.”
NYCFC Travel Roster
Goalkeepers (5): Sean Johnson#, Brad Stuver, Jeff Caldwell, Luis Barraza, Alex Rando*
Defenders (10): Anton Tinnerholm, Joe Scally, Abdi Mohamed^, Maxime Chanot, Sebastien Ibeagha, Tayvon Gray*, Alex Callens, Nico Benalcazar*, Ronald Matarrita, Ben Sweat
Midfielders (11): Alex Ring, Ebenezer Ofori, James Sands, Justin Haak, Keaton Parks, Tony Rocha, Juan Pablo Torres, Dante Polvara*, Maxi Moralez, Danny Bedoya, Veljko Petkovic*
Forwards (4): Jonathan Lewis#, Jesus Medina, Valentin Castellanos, Ismael Tajouri-Shradi
* Academy Player
^ Unsigned Draft Pick
# will join at conclusion of USMNT camp