Five players, three of them from Southern California, survived a week in the L.A. Galaxy's youth academy to advance to the finals of MLS's fourth “Sueño” talent search this week at Home Depot Center.
The competition, among 15 players who tried out in L.A., Chicago and Houston, plays out as a reality show on Univision's “Republica Deportivo” and is meant to uncover primarily Hispanic players who have gone otherwise unnoticed. Chivas USA winger Jorge Flores, from Anaheim, was winner of the first competition in 2007.
The local players who will take part in the “Final Event,” which will run Wednesday through next Sunday,” are:
Javier Castro (Pomona), an 18-year-old forward of Mexican descent considered the most technical player among the 10 who took part in the Galaxy training camp last week.
Victor Jimenez (Anaheim), a 16-year-old forward who has never played club soccer but was an All-CIF Southern Section selection as a junior at Savanna High School earlier this year.
Jonathan Navas (Los Angeles), an 18-year-old winger and attacking midfielder who was born in El Salvador and has played at Los Angeles High School.
Also reaching the final 15 are 16-year-old midfielder Denis Alvarado, from Fairfield in Northern California, and 14-year-old defender Oscar Velazquez, from Las Vegas.
The “Sueño” winner will be announced on next Sunday's “Republica Deportivo.” Univision is KMEX/Channel 34 in Greater Los Angeles.