In a release sent on Wednesday, the Pittsburgh Riverhounds Development Academy announced that local goalkeeper Dane Jacoman has signed on to play for the D.C. United Academy. He will begin his playing stint under the MLS club this August.
“It’s been a dream for me since I was a kid to play pro,” Jacomen said. “D.C. United is a very well accomplished MLS team and their academy is one of the best in the country.”
VIDEO: Jacomen discusses Academy’s impact on his move to D.C.
“We couldn’t be more excited to welcome Dane to the D.C. United Academy. He is one of the top goalkeepers in the country and came from a great environment in the USL with the Pittsburgh Riverhounds,” said Ryan Martin, D.C. United Academy Director.
“[Sporting Director JasonKutney] and his staff did a tremendous job preparing Dane to be able to step into this environment. This will continue to allow Dane his journey to the MLS. We are happy to work with Pittsburgh and have Dane join the DCU family.”
The addition of Jacomen will help the Black-and-Red to potentially sign the keeper as a Homegrown Player. At the moment, USL clubs are unable to offer younger prospects such contracts.
“As a club committed to player development and advancement, we must always be active in seeking out ways to push players along,” Kutney said. “Dane has developed nicely and has reached a point where we could confidently open doors for him at the next level, helping him to realize his fullest potential on the greatest stage possible.
“Starting this year, there will be steps taken to formalize a pipeline process from our Academy to the MLS level, so this is an exciting first step. We want to be a club that is recognized for helping players move on in the game, if that is what they want and they are good enough. Providing that level of access is of great importance to the development of the game in this country.”
Before Jacomen joins the D.C. United Academy, he will finish out his RDA career with regional and national tournament competitions. Between the RDA events, he plans to travel to Washington and begin training with the professional team prior to when he will officially join the club in August.
“The whole philosophy is about growth and about development,” Jacomen said about his time with the RDA program. “I think that’s big. Of course we still want to win – we’re going to tournaments to win – but at the same time it’s all about player growth and development and I think that’s a huge reason why I’m here today.”
Earlier this year, Jacomen was a member of the D.C. United Generation Adidas Cup roster. He also participated in the U.S. Under-16 Boy’s National Team Camp in Bradenton, Florida this past March as well as the 2001 Olympic Development Program Boys in the U.S. Youth Soccer ODP Nike Friendlies in Lakewood Ranch, Florida this past December.
Jacomen will complete his senior year of high school via online classes while playing for the D.C. United Academy.