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Bulls Abroad: Derrick Etienne called to June camp by Haiti U-23s

Another step forward for RBNY's rapidly developing academy prospect...

Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Red Bulls II have been having an up-and-down inaugural season in USL so far, but results are not the team's primary objective. Rather, NYRB II is charged with developing players for RBNY's MLS squad.

To that end, few on the roster have caught the eye as often as Derrick Etienne, who has turned recent matches for the Red Bulls' reserve team into something of a personal highlight reel:

He's hot right now, but he is also young and not yet turned professional (he's committed to the University of Virginia). Nonetheless, he played for Haiti in the CONCACAF U-20 Championship in January, and his form has some observers hopeful he may yet get recognition on an even bigger stage:

Gold Cup preliminary squad announcements should start to trickle in during the first week of June, but that is a big step up for an amateur player. Derrick Etienne does, however, have a more immediate chance to impact regional soccer: he has been called up by Haiti's U-23 team (along with his cousin, Aaron).

Both Etiennes are on their way to training camp, one assumes as part of Haiti's preparations for the upcoming Caribbean zone qualifying tournament for the 2016 Olympics. Haiti will host a group comprising itself, Barbados, Cayman Islands, and Saint Kitts and Nevis. Those four teams will play a round-robin tournament from June 24 to June 28. The winner progresses to a final round to be held in August - and two teams will progress from there to the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament in October.

Once A Metro wishes Derrick (and Aaron) Etienne every success in the upcoming Haiti U23 camp.

Quite how much time the former misses for NYRB II will presumably depend on the whether he is confirmed as part of the final squad for the qualifying tournament in late June. NYRB II has four matches scheduled for this month: @ Montreal on 6/6; @ Wilmington on 6/13; @ Lousville City on 6/20; @ Saint Louis on 6/27.

A player involved in the Haiti U-23s' Olympic qualifying effort might reasonably be expected to miss the latter two games on that June schedule, and Etienne's current trip will keep him out of the team's game in Montreal.

So we may not be seeing much of Derrick Etienne with NYRB II this month. For the sake of his burgeoning international soccer career, and Haiti's hopes of making the 2016 Olympics - we certainly hope he's not spending too much time in USL this June.

Best of luck to the Etiennes and Haiti this month.