Just what is the MLS Draft and how does it work?
USA’s elite soccer league known as Major League Soccer or the ‘MLS’ host an annual “SuperDraft” every January in which teams from the league will pick up to four players each from Colleges across the country.
The draft is divided into four rounds in which each club has one selection. Expansion teams always get the first picks with the order then determined by league position from the previous season, from lowest to highest.
For example, last year in 2020 the first two picks went to David Beckham’s Inter Miami CF and Nashville SC respectively.
What is an Expansion Team?
An expansion team is a newly formed club that joins the MLS that year. The newest addition this year being Austin FC.
The MLS has made considerable strides from having 16 teams in the league back in 2010 to now having 26 teams with a further 3 teams confirmed to join in 2022.
Expansion teams also get an exclusive “Expansion Draft” where each new team can select up to five players each from existing MLS teams. Non-expansion teams can protect up to 12 members of their squad from being drafted while only one player from your team can be taken during the draft.
Daniel Pereira of Virgina Tech was the no1 draft pick to newly formed Austin FC. Image courtesy of Austin FC Twitter
When & where is the MLS Draft?
Round 1 of the 2021 MLS Draft took place last Thursday 21st January. Scroll down to see what colleges supplied the MLS with their top talent.
Are you ready to start your journey to College and the MLS?
The first step on your journey to the MLS is to study and play at a college in America.
If you are looking to study abroad and think you are good enough for a soccer scholarship, simply complete one of the forms below to find out how Soccer Assist can help you.
- UK students: http://www.soccer-assist.co.uk/apply-now
- Non-UK students: http://www.soccer-assist.co.uk/apply-now
Soccer Assist – the U.K.’s leading soccer scholarship agency
Who’s been drafted?
MLS SuperDraft 2021 Logo. (Courtesy MLS)
- Atlanta United – Daniel Pereira, Virginia Tech
- Chicago Fire – Mitch Guitar, University of Wisconsin
- Columbus Crew – Justin Malou, Clemson
- D.C. United – Kimarni Smith, Clemson & Michael DeSheilds, Wake Forest
- Inter Miami CF – Josh Penn, Indiana & Aimé Mabika, Kentucky
- CF Montreal – Giuseppe Barone, Michigan State
- Nashville SC – Irakoze Donasiyano, University of Virginia
- New England Revolution – Edward Kizza, University of Pittsburgh
- New York City FC – Vuk Latinovich, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
- New York Red Bulls – Luther Archimede, Syracuse
- Orlando City SC – Derek Dodson & Rio Hope-Gund, Georgetown & Bandon Hackenberg, Penn State
- Toronto FC – Matt Di Rosa, University of Maryland
- Austin FC – Freddy Keemann, University of Washington & Aedan Stanley, Duke University
- FC Cincinnati – Calvin Harris, Wake Forest
- Colorado Rapids – Philip Mayaka, Clemson
- FC Dallas – Nicky Hernandez, Southern Methodist University
- Houston Dynamo – Ethan Bartlow, University of Washington
- LAFC – Daniel Trejo, California State, Northridge
- LA Galaxy – Josh Drack, University of Denver
- Minnesota United FC – Nabi Kibunguchy, University of California, Davis
- Portland Timbers – Diego Gutierrez, Creighton University
- Real Salt Lake – Bret Halsey, University of Virginia
- San Jose Earthquakes – Thomas Williamson, University of California, Berkley
- Seattle Sounders – Joe Hafferty, Oregon State University
- Sporting KC – Jamal Roberts, Marshall University
- Vancouver Whitecaps – David Egbo, University of Akron & Javain Brown, University of South Florida
See the full draft here: https://www.mlssoccer.com/superdraft/2021/tracker