The New York Red Bulls boast one of the best academies in North America, and with all that talent there seems to constantly be the next big thing coming through. Sometimes, like with Matt Miazga, it works out. Other times it doesn't. After New York's homegrown signing spree this past offseason it might seem like the prospect pool is running dry, but that couldn't be further from the truth. Let us take a look at who could be New York's next homegrown signing.
Mason Deeds- A center back by trade, the 17 year-old has been New York's next great academy player for a few years. He has trained with the first team, as well as abroad in Salzburg and Leipzig - all within the last year. He is clearly rated highly by RBNY. He currently features for the U18s and occasionally NYRB II and is set to attend Georgetown in the fall.
Noah Powder- Another 17 year-old defender, Powder, a left back, has impressed many with his play for NYRB II after appearing almost out of nowhere. He has captained Trinidad and Tobago's U17 team and is currently a part of the nation's U20 squad, appearing to excel at all levels he's played. Powder is not yet committed to a college, despite graduating from high school soon. Though a first team homegrown contract is unlikely, don't be surprised to see him sign with the USL squad - and be even less surprised to hear Once A Metro celebrating the signing if and when it happens.
Brian Saramago- Saramago tore up the USDA last year, scoring 31 goals in 32 appearances for the U16 team. This, in turn, earned him some playing time with NYRB II last year at only 16. Now, Saramago plays for the U18s, where he's scored 18 goals in 19 games while continuing to appear occasionally for Red Bulls II. Though it's unlikely he'll sign to the first team in the short term, as Saramago looks set to go to Loyola Maryland in the fall, if he continues to score at these rates it won't be long before the Red Bulls come calling.
Other names to watch for: Chris Gloster, Ben Mines, Omir Fernandez
Arun Basuljevic- A rising-sophomore at Georgetown, Basuljevic is everything one could want in a two-way midfielder. He has scored 12 goals in 43 appearances for the Hoyas while also assisting on four more. Basuljevic was one of the last cuts on the U20 World Cup team with an absolutely stacked midfield (Emerson Hyndman and Gedion Zelalem started for the US in the tournament).Though he wasn't part of the homegrown binge last winter, it is very likely that Basuljevic could leave school early this coming winter to join the Red Bulls after only three years in college, much like his former Hoya teammate Alex Muyl.
Adam Najem- Debatably the best midfielder in college, Najem and the New York Red Bulls have been the will-they, won't-they pairing for the last few years. In 68 games for Akron, Najem has scored 28 goals and has 24 more assists to add on to that, as well as being named to the Hermann Trophy Watchlist. He reportedly turned down a homegrown deal last winter before going on trials in Europe. Now back at Akron for his senior year it is looking increasingly like Najem could be New York's major homegrown signing this offseason.
Other names to watch for: Kevin Politz, Erik Sa, Alex Tejera, Juan Sebastian Sanchez, Andrew Lombard, Marcello Borges, Chris Lema
New York Red Bulls II
Dan Metzger- Metzger was one of the best midfielders coming out of college two years ago. As the Red Bulls signed Sean Davis to a homegrown deal Metzger decided to test the draft. An injury prior to the combine led to a lackluster performance. His draft stock dropped, he was eventually picked late by DC United before being cut in preseason. Now back at NYRBII, Metzger, a defensive midfielder, could be the perfect guy to step up and rotate into the first team - making sure Dax McCarty doesn't continue to run himself into the ground.
Konrad Plewa- Plewa doesn't have the highest ceiling of everyone on this list, as at 24 he's more of a finished product than most, but that doesn't mean he couldn't do a job for the Red Bulls. He has been New York Red Bulls II's most consistent player over the last two years despite playing a litany of positions. Head Coach John Wolyniec is clearly a fan. He would offer defensive depth across the back half of the field for New York, think Connor Lade but slightly more physical and a much larger physical presence. It is players like Plewa who will increase the quality of MLS significantly by upping the level of the middle of the roster going forward.