Sporting Kansas City forward Soony Saad joins the Lebanon Men's National Team today for two upcoming 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers. Lebanon plays at Kuwait on Nov. 15 and hosts Iran on Nov. 19.
"I am thrilled to be selected by the Lebanese National Team and I'm excited to make an impact on the international stage," Saad said. "Hopefully, I'll bring back some good experience to Sporting Kansas City and help us make it to MLS Cup."
Saad, 21, scored on his national team debut with Lebanon in a 1-1 draw against Oman in May in an international friendly and became the first player in MLS history to appear for the Lebanon Men's National Team. No. 121 in the latest FIFA rankings, Lebanon has four points through three of the country's six games (1-1-1) in 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifying and currently sit in third place in Group B, one point behind Kuwait and three points back of group leaders Iran.
Sixteen countries will qualify for the 2015 Asian Cup in Australia, including the top two teams in each qualifying group and the best overall third place team. The final qualifying fixture for Lebanon will be played on March 5, 2014.
Acquired by Sporting KC via a weighted lottery in 2011, Saad scored in his MLS debut on his 19th birthday and now has five goals and five assists in 36 MLS appearances. He scored two goals during Sporting Kanas City's run to the 2012 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup championship and also struck twice in the 2013-14 CONCACAF Champions League group stage.
Saad has previously represented the United States at the youth level, most recently appearing for the U.S. Under-20 Men's National Team in December 2010. He was a member of the U.S. Soccer Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla. for the Spring Semester in 2009 and was the 2008 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Player of the Year.
Saad is scheduled to return to Kansas City on Nov. 20 and will be available for the second leg of the Eastern Conference Championship against the Houston Dynamo on Nov. 23 at Sporting Park. A limited number of tickets for the match, presented by Ivy Funds, are available to purchase online via Ticketmaster.com.