Salgado available for Vancouver following FIFA approval

Salgado (getty) 

The Vancouver Whitecaps have announced that 17-year-old striker Omar Salgado is available for immediate selection after his International Transfer Certificate was approved by FIFA.

The top pick in the 2011 MLS SuperDraft was expected to be out until perhaps his 18th birthday in September due to FIFA’s restrictions on youth players playing outside their home countries.

The Texas native is currently participating in the U.S. U-20 National Team camp ahead of its qualifying tournament for the 2011 U-20 World Cup in Colombia.

"I am excited for the opportunity to contribute to my club on the field and I will continue working hard, so that I am ready when the day comes,” Salgado told the club’s official website.

The move was also approved by the United States and Canadian soccer federations.

“Omar is a great talent and will be an important player to the club,” Vancouver head coach Teitur Thordarson said. “To have the news that he will be able to play from this point on is great for us, as Omar has already showed us that he can play on this level. I’m delighted for him and the club.”

What do you think of this development? How big an impact with Salgado have in his rookie season? Excited to see what the teenager can do?

Share your thoughts below.

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67 Responses to Salgado available for Vancouver following FIFA approval

  1. ACS says:

    Good Deal

  2. Zac says:

    This is great, I think Omar is going to make a solid impact this year up in Vancouver.

  3. Petaluman says:

    This is good news. I’d like to see what this kid can do sooner than later.

  4. Ron says:

    Great news – for Vancouver, MLS and hopefully the USMNT!

  5. gaucho says:

    I hope this becomes a routine waiver by FIFA. MLS is one of the few, if not the only, top division professional league that covers two countries. The risks of exploitation of young players that was the rationale for the rule simply doesn’t make much sense here. Omar is not coming from a poor country and getting stuck at the end of the bench on a reserve team in Europe–he’s playing for a league that includes the country of his citizenship.

  6. This Guy says:

    Cardiff City is in Wales so the EPL/Championship covers 2. I get your point though.

  7. SSB says:

    Great news for Whitecaps FC, this really helps the forward depth on the team.
    More importantly with Hassli and Harris playing well and developing good chemistry together, this allows Salgado to properly develop and have less pressure on his 17 year shoulders. The good news is we don’t have to wait and only watch him practice all season, never getting game time, not being in true game fit condition. Now, Omar can be even more excited for his US U-20 camp and friendly this weekend, play well, and he knows he will play in MLS come April. Much less pressure than waiting for a debut on his birthday against the NYRB in September @NY. Looking forward to see the 17 year old progress throughout the season coming off in relief. He played very well in the preseason at the Cascadia Summit vs. Sounders FC at Starfire. Enjoy your Early and surprise Birthday present Omar!

  8. Drexel 10 says:

    Wales is not a country. My wife is from there, they are a part of the UK. They do have their own FIFA credentials, so it is a bit confusing.

  9. Jeremy says:

    just wondering if a 17 year old Englishman could play for Cardiff. Would he need a similar approval, or just be free to play.

  10. fischy says:

    Have to agree with Gaucho above — I can’t reply there because of software problems.

    There are no reasons to apply that rule for transfers within US and Canada for MLS prospects. It would needlessly disadvantage the Canadian teams, as it’s only likely to come up for USA players drafted by teams up north.

    Smart gamble by the ‘Caps. With all the hyping they’re doing, I have to admit I’m really interested in seeing the kid play.

  11. shane says:

    FIFA actually used common sense and made the right decision!! Good luck to the kid! But wasnt he already playing in Mexico? Did FIFA make this decision twice?

  12. Brokenbii says:

    Sweet! I can’t wait to add him to my MFLS roster!

  13. shane says:

    Sorry Drexel you are wrong. Wales is a country, as is Scotland, England, and North Ireland. Try telling an English bloke that England is not a country. The UK is a sovereign state.

  14. sk says:

    He would be free to play because both Wales and England are part of the United Kingdom, even though they have separate FA’s it is still considered one country for those purposes.

  15. anon says:

    No, he’d be free. They’re all UK citizens. In fact, any EU citizen can play for any EU teams’ club pre-18 because of EU free trade laws.

    Theoretically MLS could do the same thing, but because of NAFTA they’d have to count Mexicans as equal to Americans and Canadians. So they prefer the alternative, which requires that workaround.

  16. John says:

    i think the ‘home’ countries are allowed to move players freely. could be wrong though.

  17. Kyle says:

    Not sure how committed this guy is to Vancouver, I read where he stated that he was trying to get his Spanish passport so he could play in Spain. He went on to say that he’s always felt he was Spanish and would not rule out playing for their NT.

  18. Drexel 10 says:


    link to

    They are a country in what sense? They don’t have Welsh passports, or a member state with the UN. The only country listed is UK and Northern Ireland. I have been to Wales and love the Welsh people, but technically it isn’t a different country in terms of work etc..

  19. afc says:

    Yes because Wales and England are part of the UK. The UK is part of the EU. Players with EU passports are granted free movement across EU countries starting at 16.

  20. Kevin says:

    What? I’m interested in where you have heard this because I have only read that, if anywhere outside the US, he might be eligible to play for Mexico. But Spain? I dont think so.

  21. DCUPedro says:

    Technically, you’re actually wrong. You’re using the colloquial definition of country.

    Technically, there aren’t any “countries” in the UN, because the term has no meaning in political science.

    The UN refers to its members as “Member States” for a reason. State is the term for a political entity with borders that has sovereignty in the international context.

    Wales is a nation, and might also be called a country, but it is not a State. Look up the definition of “nation”. From wikipedia, for instance: “Contemporary definitions of the word Nation often focus on the idea of a country or sovereign state. Nevertheless, the terms has historically referred to a community of people who share a common history, language, culture, ancestry and/or territory”

    Wales is a nation, Palestine is a nation, Quebec is a nation, Guadaloupe is a nation. None of these issue passports or have the other markings of states.

    This is why Scotland, Wales, England, Northern Ireland are called “the home nations” in the UK.

  22. John says:

    The restrictions only apply to underage kids playing in a country which they do not hold citizenship to. He had a Mexican passport through his parents.

  23. Ossington Mental Youth says:

    Quebec is not a nation.

    Maybe in a few delusional minds it is, but it is a province in the nation of Canada.

  24. Villain-from-Texas says:

    Wow. People. I mean, wow. Are we will debating whether Wales is a country? It is a country. Full stop.

  25. John says:

    You must be thinking of someone else. It was between the US and Mexico. Where did you get Spain?

  26. CSD says:

    One League with two states participating in the EU would be the French league I believe. Monaco plays in the league and they are microstate.

  27. Drexel 10 says:

    I know that they are member states, but the term that was being used was country. Sorry we can break it down further, but the point of this argument was regards to Cardiff and Swansea competing in the EPL and players being eligible to play in a different country/nation/member state or what ever you want to call it right now.

    Quebec was a great example of why your definition is incorrect.. BTW

  28. CSD says:

    You also have the A League. New Zealand has a club in predominantly Australian League. Those countries are not even in the same federation anymore.

  29. CSD says:

    But Monaco doesn’t have its own federation:

    “Though based in Monaco, the club is regarded as a French club, as the club plays in the French football league system, and because the principality of Monaco is not a member of UEFA.”

  30. CSD says:

    excuse me I meant “confederation” not federation.

  31. guwinster says:

    Any chance the people at FIFA just thought that Canada was an American state?

  32. Monzon says:

    Very true, but New Zealand is Australia’s Canada.

    Also, UK is one state, the rest are nations. They are two very different things and they may one day go independent like the nations in Northern and Southern Sudan being separated by popular referendum, but currently they are different nations living in one state.

    Nation- people, culture
    Country- land
    State- Sovereignty, government

  33. cisco2k says:

    With Hassili not 90 min fit, Salgado should get plenty of PT.

  34. ross says:

    Shane is right. Wales (and England, Scotland, N. Ireland) are a country within a country.. much like Inception

  35. Michael Vann says:

    Omar’s grandfather was from Spain allowing him access to a Spanish passport. He said he admired La Liga and eventually would like to play in Spain not for Spain. The kid is fully committed to VWFC. There’s no need to worry but like any footballer he aspires to be in Europe eventually.

  36. K-Town says:

    I have never understood how that works. Scotland has its own league, and national team, but aren’t they also part of the U.K.? And if Wales and Scotland are both part of the U.K. why does Scotland have its own league and not Wales? Always made me wonder.

  37. Steve C says:

    Wales does have its own league. Its just really small and not successful, compared to England & Scotland.

    link to

  38. MBBeachbum says:

    Because Wales has about 27 citizens.

  39. Seriously says:

    Sorry dude but you are the one who is wrong and Quebec is entirely different than Wales.

  40. Seriously says:

    It’s not?

  41. mak1018 says:

    For once FIFA got something right. Congrats to OMAR

  42. spencer says:

    wasn’t Salgado starting in the pre-season? He will definitely be valuable to the team.

  43. Dale says:

    Chivas guadalajara makes good players,lets hope this kid is as good as the other 17 year old chivas has right now Erick Torres.That torres kid has scored 5 goals in 8 games in his debut season, and Chivas claim he’s the reason salgado left the squad. lets see what Salgado is made of.

  44. DC Josh says:

    Good job FIFA. Wow, I just said it!

  45. DC Josh says:

    Good job FIFA. Wow, I just said it!

  46. StevenG says:


  47. Jay says:

    What about a 17 year old from Australia playing in New Zealand or vice versa would they have to get the same waiver. New Zealand/Australia have the same set up as MLS that top league is combined sort of.

  48. Dillon says:

    It is a country in name only. Wales is a country in the same way that Bohemia or Catalonia are countries. There are absolutely no legal distinctions between citizens of Wales and of England. The Welsh National Assembly has far less power than possessed by the legislatures of American states. Just because an English bloke thinks England is a country does not alter international law to make it so.

  49. cajun says:

    This is fantastic!! With the immenant emergences of Agudelo and Salgado (I don’t care how old they are!), perhaps this will light a fire under Altidores arse that, just maybe, he’s not guaranteed a spot for WC 2014!

  50. Scott A says:

    Makes sense. Canada and the US are friends with benefits.

  51. This Guy says:

    I’m pretty sure Joe Ledley played for Cardiff when he was 17 but he may be Welsh

  52. Kevin says:

    Mike, thanks for the clarification, dude.

  53. abc says:

    If you’re going to claim that Salgado said he wouldn’t rule out playing for Spain’s NT, you’re going to need to provide a link and a quote.

    Of course he wants to use a Spanish passport to one day play in Europe, that’s no different from all the other Americans who try to play in Europe and doesn’t mean he’s not committed to Vancouver.

  54. abc says:

    FIFA doesn’t screw up for once!

    Is this a blanket ruling that applies to all such cases, or will future under-18 players have to go through the same process to get approval?

  55. McNulty says:

    Omar Comin’!

  56. Steve McSteve says:

    +1 for civics lesson

  57. Steve McSteve says:

    Atiba Harris also could be shifted to the wings

  58. Steve McSteve says:

    +1 for the Wire reference

  59. Drexel 10 says:

    When did I say Quebec was like Wales? That was another poster who called them both nations? Which Quebec isn’t.

  60. Big Smoke says:

    I thought they claimed that the US “poached” him. Just like they have ALWAYS done and CONTINUE to do with young Mexican players. Like Omar Salgado… and that guy… with the eyes…ya know…. he has that hair sometimes…

  61. Indigo Montoya says:

    Reading some of these comments made my eyes sad.

  62. Sonicdeathmonkey says:

    I doubt it. All they would have to do is look at the murder rate per capita in Canada compared to the US. Then they would know that Canada couldn’t possibly be part of the US.

  63. kiwi says:


    Australia is New Zealand’s bitch!!!


  64. alexalex says:

    No, because they are sovereign nations. In the UK, they have separate FAs for the purposes of FIFA, but it’s still the same country. Notice there is not “England” team at the Olympics. So it’s not really the same thing. But I hope that the USA and Canada could somehow negotiate with FIFA to get these things fast-tracked intra-league.

  65. alexalex says:

    Scotland has its own national team in FIFA. Look at the Olympics – there is only a UK team. It’s just an exception from FIFA.

  66. Vince says:

    Canada really needs their own league

  67. To Ho says:

    No. MLS really needs Canada in their league. FC Edmonton would be another fine addition.