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Major League Soccer's annual Generation adidas tour of Europe begins Monday, and the 18-man team Sporting Kansas City coach Peter Vermes will guide includes Zarek Valentin, who would still be part of Chivas USA if he were still in the Generation adidas program.
Valentin, 20, who went to Montreal in last week's expansion draft, is one of four players “graduated” last month from the developmental program on the roster for the 10-day trip, which includes games against Ajax Amsterdam's reserve team, FC Volendam and Almere City FC. Vermes played for Volendam in 1990.
The other “graduates” are Columbus midfielder Dilly Duka and Tony Tchani and Philadelphia forward Danny Mwanga.
Garden Grove's Luis Gil (Santiago HS), a rising midfielder with Real Salt Lake, Philadelphia midfielder Amobi Okugo (UCLA) and Seattle defender Michael Tetteh (UC Santa Barbara) are among continuing GA players on the roster.
MLS's decision to “graduate” Valentin from the GA program led the Goats to leave him exposed in the expansion draft, where he was nabbed by Montreal coach Jesse Marsch, a former Chivas captain. Galaxy coach Robin Fraser last week said it “extremely baffling” and said he was “extremely, extremely disappointed” to see Valentin, 20, pulled from the program.
GA players do not count against clubs' salary caps nor roster sizes.
MLS officials have not addressed the reasoning behind the decision despite requests to do so.
The GA roster is bolstered by former GA Kevin Alston, a defender for New England, and three Home Grown Players: New York's Sacir Hot and Matt Kassel and D.C. United's Conor Shanosky.
The full roster:
Goalkeepers: David Bingham (San Jose), Zac MacMath (Philadelphia)
Defenders: Kevin Alston (New England), Sacir Hot (New York), Conor Shanosky (D.C. United), Kofi Sarkodie (Houston), Michael Tetteh (Seattle), Zarek Valentin (Montreal).
Midfielders: Dilly Duka (Columbus), Amobi Okugo (Philadelphia), Luis Gil (Real Salt Lake), Matt Kassel (New York), Jack McInerney (Philadelphia), Tony Tchani (Columbus).
Forwards: Will Bruin (Houston), Corey Hertzog (New York), Danny Mwanga (Philadelphia), Omar Salgado (Vancouver)