Sporting KC defender Kayden Pierre to join United States U-20 Men’s National Team for training camp in Texas


Sporting Kansas City defender Kayden Pierre has been named to the United States U-20 Men’s National Team for a domestic training camp in Frisco, Texas, from Oct. 25 to Nov. 6 at Toyota Soccer Center.

Pierre is part of a 16-player squad assembled by head coach Mikey Varas and will join the U.S. U-20 MNT for the second time this year after participating in a California training camp from April 22-30.

The senior U.S. Men's National Team will also be in Frisco from Oct. 25-Nov. 5, holding fitness workouts for MLS-based players in contention for the World Cup roster and no longer in league competition.

The U.S. U-20s have enjoyed a successful 2022 campaign thus far, hoisting the Concacaf U-20 Championship in July and thereby qualifying for the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Indonesia as well as the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris. Players born on or after Jan. 1, 2003 are eligible for the 2023 U-20 World Cup cycle.

Pierre, 19, is coming off a breakout season with Sporting’s first team. The dynamic right back played 23 matches in all competitions, earning his MLS debut in March and starting nine of 19 league appearances. He tallied his first MLS assist in a 1-1 road draw at Minnesota United FC on July 13 and helped Sporting reach the semifinals of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup, starting in two of three tournament appearances.

A native of Michigan, Pierre signed for Sporting as a Homegrown Player in early 2021. His first professional season was spent mostly with Sporting KC II, where he started in 26 of 28 matches during the 2021 USL Championship campaign and finished second on the team in minutes (2,252) while recording two assists.

Pierre joined the Sporting KC Academy in 2018 from Vardar SC in his native state. He went on to represent Sporting at the U-15, U-17 and U-19 levels, making upwards of 60 academy appearances and guiding the U-17s to the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Playoffs in 2019. While in Kansas City, Pierre has lived with a host family through a program currently supported by the Audi Goals Drive Progress initiative. Capable of playing at both outside back positions, Pierre gained his first professional experience during the latter half of 2020 when he signed an amateur academy contract for Sporting KC II.

Pierre’s most recent competitive action with the U.S. U-20s came last November at the Revelations Cup in Celaya, Mexico. He appeared in all three matches at the tournament, marking the U-20 MNT’s return to action for the first time since January 2020 after the 2020 Concacaf U-20 Championship and 2021 FIFA U-20 World Cup were canceled due to Covid-19.

Pierre has previously competed for the United States U-14 and U-16 national teams. He participated in multiple U-14 training camps from 2016-2017 before jumping to the U-16s for training camps from 2018-2019.


GOALKEEPERS (2): Chris Brady (Chicago Fire FC; Naperville, Ill.), Antonio Carrera (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas) 

DEFENDERS (5): Marcus Ferkranus (LA Galaxy; Santa Clarita, Calif.), Jalen Neal (LA Galaxy; Lakewood, Calif.), Kayden Pierre (Sporting Kansas City; Rochester Hills, Mich.), John Tolkin (New York Red Bulls; Chatham, N.J.), Caleb Wiley (Atlanta United FC; Atlanta, Ga.) 

MIDFIELDERS (4): Daniel Edelman (New York Red Bulls; Warren, N.J.), Daniel Leyva (Seattle Sounders FC; Las Vegas, Nev.), Aidan Morris (Columbus Crew SC; Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.), Niko Tsakiris (San Jose Earthquakes; Saratoga, Calif.)

FORWARDS (5): Cade Cowell (San Jose Earthquakes; Ceres, Calif.), Benjamin Cremaschi (Inter Miami CF; Miami, Fla.), Brian Gutierrez (Chicago Fire FC; Chicago, Ill.), Jackson Hopkins (D.C. United; Fredericksburg, Va.), Marcos Zambrano (Philadelphia Union; Gladwyne, Pa.)