Atlanta United today announced the signing of 15-year-old midfielder Andrew Carleton. Carleton will be added to Atlanta’s roster as a Homegrown Player in 2017 upon completion of the necessary Homegrown Player training requirements. Carleton, a native of Powder Springs, GA, will be the first player to sign a Homegrown Player contract with the club.
Atlanta United recently launched its U.S. Soccer Development Academy (DA) for levels U18, U16, U14, U13 and U12 taking on the U18 and U16 levels from Carleton’s home club Georgia United Soccer Alliance (GUSA).
The Atlanta United front office team, including owner Arthur Blank, along with club supporters officially welcomed Carleton at Atlanta landmark restaurant The Varsity where he signed his first MLS contract.
Carleton joined the U.S. Youth National Team at the U15 level and is currently in residency with the U17 National Team. A creative and technical player, Carleton has an attacking playing style that fits well into Atlanta United’s approach to building its first team.
“We’re excited to welcome Andrew to the club,” said Atlanta United technical director Carlos Bocanegra. “He’s an outstanding young talent with strong ties to Georgia soccer so we’re very proud to name him the first homegrown player in club history. Andrew has been a mainstay with the U.S. Youth National Teams from a young age and we look forward to watching him develop as a professional.”
As part of the U15 National Team, Carleton scored seven goals in five matches in the 2015 Tournament delle Nazioni in Gradisca, Italy. In 2016, he scored two goals in four matches in the Mercedes-Benz Aegean Cup with the U17 squad.
“As a new club coming into the league, it’s critical that we build a strong foundation with young, talented players from our home territory,” said Atlanta United president Darren Eales. “Andrew is a great example of the deep talent pool we have to draw from in Georgia. We’ve been very impressed with his athletic ability as well as his character off the field.”
Carleton will turn sixteen on June 22 and is currently preparing for the U17 World Cup.