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

Kayden Pierre USA U-20 Men's National Team

Sporting Kansas City right back Kayden Pierre has been named to the United States U-20 Men’s National Team for a domestic training camp at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California, from April 22-30.

Pierre is part of a 22-player squad assembled by U.S. U-20 head coach Mikey Varas and becomes the second Sporting KC Academy product to represent the U.S. U-20 MNT this year after Jayvin Van Deventer earned a training camp call-up in January. The upcoming camp in Carson is a pivotal next step for the U-20 age group as the Americans continue preparation for the Concacaf U-20 Championship this summer, which will serve as qualification 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, hit a major milestone on March 12 by making his MLS debut in Sporting’s road match against the Colorado Rapids at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park. The dynamic right back entered 2022 on the heels of an impressive 2021 campaign with Sporting Kansas City II in the USL Championship, where he made 28 appearances and finished second on the team in both starts (26) and minutes (2,252) while recording two assists. Pierre, who opened his professional scoring account in a 1-1 home draw against FC Tulsa last September, has appeared in two of SKC II’s first three MLS NEXT Pro matches this season, including a 90-minute outing in a 2-0 triumph over MNUFC2 on April 3.

A native of Michigan, 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.

The U-20s kicked off the 2022-23 cycle last November at the Revelations Cup in Celaya, Mexico, facing off against top competition in Brazil, Colombia and Mexico. Pierre 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 (3): Christopher Brady (Chicago Fire F.C.; Naperville, Ill.), Antonio Carrera (FC Dallas; Frisco, Texas), Xavier Valdez (Houston Dynamo; Bronx, N.Y.)

DEFENDERS (7): Quembol Guadalupe (Orlando City S.C.; Orlando, Fla.), Michael Halliday (Orlando City S.C.; Apopka, Fla.), Jaziel Orozco (Real Salt Lake; El Paso, Texas), Kayden Pierre (Sporting Kansas City; Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), Anthony Sorenson (Philadelphia Union; Ann Arbor, Mich.), Devan Tanton (Fulham F.C.; Orlando, Fla.), Thomas Williams (Orlando City S.C.; Titusville, Fla.)

MIDFIELDERS (6): Esmir Bajraktarevic (New England Revolution; Appleton, Wis.), Javier Casas Jr. (Chicago Fire F.C.; Addison, Ill.), Juan Castilla (Houston Dynamo; Houston, Texas), Tarun Karumanchi (UCLA; San Ramon, Calif.), Daniel Leyva (Seattle Sounders F.C.; Las Vegas, Nev.), Niko Tsakiris (San Jose Earthquakes; Saratoga, Calif.)

FORWARDS (6): Damion Downs (1. FC Koln; Schwenbenried, Germany), Kristian Fletcher (Unattached; Bowie, Md.), Luca Koleosho (RCD Espanyol; Trumbull, Conn.), Nathan Ordaz (Los Angeles F.C.; Encino, Calif.), Dante Sealy (PSV Eindhoven; Frisco, Texas), Tyler Wolff (Atlanta United F.C.; Braselton, Ga.)