Young Mexican-American Ventura Alvarado picks USMNT over El Tri

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For U.S. soccer, getting young talent on the roster is certainly the aim of a country hoping to compete among the globe’s best nations.

With Club America defender Ventura Alvarado saying he wants to join the American fold, manager Jurgen Klinsmann has another exciting young prospect at his disposal.

Alvarado was included in the USMNT’s roster for friendlies against Denmark and Switzerland, and saw 10 minutes on the field in his side’s 3-2 loss to the Red and White. He was a starter for the Eagles in Liga MX and helped guide them to a 2013-14 league crown.

At 22 years old, Alvarado has the foundation capable of creating an elite defender, similar to John Brooks, though the Bundesliga defender has displayed huge strides in his play after the World Cup.

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He even stated that he wished to commit his services to the United States over Mexico amid pressure from friends, family and teammates trying to support El Tri. But still, he’s not tied to either country since he must play a FIFA-official competition to prove his allegiance.

“I want to stay here,” Alvarado said. “I was happy to wear this jersey and I’m really motivated to be here and keep working. I’m looking forward to getting another call-up.”

“I was undecided, because my parents, they’re Mexican. They wanted me to go with Mexico….My teammates at Club America, they all wanted me to wait for the Mexican national team,” he said.

“When I talked to the coach (Miguel Herrera), he said ‘I’ll probably call you up,'” Alvarado said. “I told him ‘No, I want to go with the U.S.'”

Alvarado had some issues with consistent defending in his short appearance versus Denmark, but that happening should not incite any major concern, as he demonstrated his ability to bolster the back line well during the club season.