Incoming MLS franchise San Diego FC keep focus on youth promises with first player signing

December 14 – San Diego FC, who will be the 30th MLS franchise when they begin league play in 2025, have signed their first player, U.S. youth national team goalkeeper Duran Ferree.

MLS rules prevent San Diego FC from recruiting and signing players until 2024, but the club can sign local, San Diego based – young players like Ferree.

Ferree has agreed a four-year contract through 2027 with a club option for 2028. Ferree, 17-years-old, joins San Diego FC after spending last season with USL Championship club San Diego Loyal SC who folded at the end of their 2023 campaign.

A product of the local San Diego Surf Soccer Club, he made his professional debut with the Loyal first team at the age of 16. A member of the US U17 National Team he made five appearances with two clean sheets during 2023 World Cup qualifying and competition.

The signing is a reflection of San Diego FC franchise owners commitment to identifying and developing young talent.

The ownership group headed by Egyptian billionaire Mohamed Mansour in partnership with the Sycuan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation, a Native American tribe, paid $500 million for the franchise and is spending a further $150 million converting a Sycuan hotel property into a state-of-the-art training centre.

Central to their club proposition is the integration of the Right to Dream (RTD) academy system of recruitment and play. Mansour also invests in RTD which has established a business in developing youth players and feeding them into the professional club arena.

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