A huge smile beams from the face of Coco Navarro when you ask him about playing for Real Salt Lake in a reserve game. On one hand it shows the respect RSL has for him as a player and on the other hand it is a way for himself to prove that he is ready for the next level. In his first call up he was not featured in the game vs San Jose and in his second call up he came off the bench vs Colorado Rapids and scored what would then become the game winning goal. However his third call up was a little different because for the first time he wasn’t the lone representative from RSL-AZ.
“It was a great experience to have my teammates from the academy joining me,” Navarro said.
Former academy product Jordan Allen got the start with Navarro entering the game for him in the 72nd minute. Ive Burnett checked into the game in the 81st minute.
“The experience was really good,” Burnett said. “The atmosphere was things you can’t put into words. A kid my age in front of 6,000 fans is an amazing feeling. Once I got onto the field the adrenalin took over.”
Real Salt Lake beat reporter Matt Montgomery, runs rslsoapbox.com, had a chance to check out the game and offered his insights into our academy players:
Jordan looked fantastic, was very involved, and wasn’t afraid to attack with the ball. He had some really, really good moments in the second half — fantastic turns, backheels, chips. Coco looked fine, but wasn’t involved heavily; Ive looked fine but was only on for a short time and wasn’t asked to make any defensive contributions, as BYU was rather pinned back in their own half.
Congrats Coco, Ive and Jordan. We are all proud of your accomplishments.
Game highlights below. Full report by rslsoapbox here