Sacramento Republic FC announced their initial roster for the start of preseason on Wednesday. While most of the names are not surprising, there’s four non-rostered players listed. Two academy players — goalkeeper Diego Ramos and midfielder Julian Chavez — are going to train, possibly with an eye on the future or maybe even a look at a pro deal sooner rather than later. And two players from last weekend’s open tryouts, forward Khalid Balogun and wide player Ashkanov Apollon, made the cut to get an extended look in preseason, hoping to earn a contract.
Balogun played his college soccer at St. Mary’s of Maryland, wrapping up in 2018, while Apollon has played professionally in Thailand while splitting time in Washington State. Both players are American-born so would presumably not require international slots if they signed contracts with Sacramento.
Here’s Apollon doing some promo blue steel looks for a prior signing, with Kitsap Pumas.
Some more news for this Thursday:
- Lopez family grows: Congratulations to Rodrigo Lopez and his family, as there’s a new arrival to the clan — baby Remi. Here’s hoping the kiddo is a good sleeper at night.
- Jahn moves to Atlanta United: Adam Jahn is a native of the general area and a former Sac Republic player, and the former Phoenix Rising man is going back to MLS, as he was transferred to Atlanta United this week. One figures he’ll be the backup option to Josef Martinez, who plays every minute unless a limb is falling off, but he’ll get another chance in the top flight after a big 2019 in the USL Championship.
- Sophia Smith is the next big thing: Stanford product Sophia Smith was selected No. 1 by the Portland Thorns in the NWSL Draft last week, and our friend Kim McCauley breaks down why Smith looks like the next American star at SB Nation.
Today’s question: Sacramento has been rumored to be on the cusp of fielding an NWSL club, how would you feel about a new pro team? Are you disappointed it didn’t come to fruition for 2020? Let’s chat in the comments below!