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Shafer Gottlieb Competes in MLS NEXT Best of U16 Showcase

By Tormenta FC Staff -, 12/06/21, 2:30PM EST


15-Year-Old Defender Earns Recognition Among Nation’s Top Youth Players

Shafer Gottlieb (right) with his brother Brittain Gottlieb (Left) who competed with Tormenta FC's USL League One Squad in 2021

STATESBORO, Ga. – Tormenta FC Academy’s Shafer Gottlieb was invited to compete with the nation’s top U16 stars on Saturday evening in the MLS NEXT Fest Best of U16 Showcase in Norco, California.

TFC Academy’s 2003/04 and 2006 MLS Next Boys teams are currently competing in the inaugural MLS NEXT Fest through Tuesday, Dec. 7. The five-day event features over 300 of the top youth teams across the United States and Canada.

"I couldn't be more proud and excited for Shafer to be given this opportunity,” TFC Academy’s U14/U16 MLS NEXT Head Coach Jay Peake commented. “This is a reward for the growth he has shown both on and off the field. This selection is not only a testament to Shafer, but to the club as a whole. Since joining MLS NEXT, I believe we have shown that we can compete against the biggest clubs in the country.

This selection shows that there are opportunities at Tormenta FC to compete at the very highest level of youth soccer in the U.S. and should excite and inspire our other players to continue trusting the process.”

Shafer Gottlieb with his Teammates, TFC Academy U16 MLS NEXT Squad

During the match, Gottlieb held down the back line for the entirety of the first half, helping his squad keep a clean sheet through the first 45 minutes. The 15-year-old defender was coached by former professionals and MLS legends, also gaining exposure with U.S. National Team scouts in attendance at the showcase.

“I’m thrilled to be given this huge opportunity,” Gottlieb said. “I thank my family and teammates, along with my coaches and the entire Tormenta family for their support. It was an amazing experience. We kept a clean sheet the first half, which I was honored to play in full. And a special thank you to all our supporters who came and cheered me on.”

Committed to raising the level of soccer locally and across the country, Tormenta FC Academy has programs available from age two all the way up to age 19 and is the only youth academy in South Georgia and the Lowcountry of South Carolina with a path to the professional ranks. For additional Academy news and content, follow Tormenta FC Academy on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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