The last rumor about a potential new Homegrown Player signing for the New York Red Bulls didn’t last much longer than it took notice it existed.
Perhaps this next one will prove a little more robust: ProSoccerUSA’s Dylan Butler advises that Omir Fernandez is being lined up to join RBNY on a Homegrown Player deal.
Hearing the Red Bulls are working to finalize a Homegrown deal with Omir Fernandez, who came up through the club's academy. The Bronx native is a sophomore at Wake Forest and just got called up to the US U20 camp #RBNY— Dylan Butler (@Dylan_Butler) January 5, 2019
Fernandez is coming off an eye-opening sophomore season with Wake Forest, which has won him a look at this month’s US U-20 Men’s National Team training camp. He was flagged as the top NCAA prospect for a Homegrown Player contract by Travis Clark for mlssoccer.com at the start of the year (i.e. a few days ago).
A heavy scorer for RBNY Academy teams, Fernandez has carried that form with him to his college career, where he scored 18 goals and tallied 11 assists in 44 appearances for Wake Forest over the last two seasons. He has been on the US Youth National Teams’ radar for a while, but the current U-20 cohort (which includes Fernandez’s fellow RBNY Academy product Tyler Adams) is very strong.
If he does sign a HGP deal with RBNY for the coming year, he’ll be expected to see most of his minutes in 2019 with the II team. But there is a wide-open spot on the first-team roster for a goal-scorer to back-up Bradley Wright-Phillips, and it will go to whichever player makes best use of the opportunities he is given next season.