July 12th, 2024

Jay Herdman, son of John Herdman, to play for New Zealand at Paris Olympics

By The Canadian Press on July 10, 2024.

New Zealand's Jay Herdman, right, celebrates with teammate Kian Donkers after scoring the second goal against Uzbekistan during a FIFA U-20 World Cup group A soccer match at Madre De Ciudades stadium in Santiago Del Estero, Argentina, Tuesday, May 23, 2023. Jay Herdman, son of Toronto FC coach John Herdman, has been named to New Zealand's Olympic soccer team. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Nicolas Aguilera

Jay Herdman, son of Toronto FC coach John Herdman, has been named to New Zealand’s Olympic soccer team for the Paris games.

The 19-year-old Herdman captains the Whitecaps FC 2, Vancouver’s entry in the MLS Next Pro league.

Herdman has five goals and three assists in 15 appearances for the Whitecaps’ second team this season. He made his MLS debut April 20, coming off the bench in a 2-0 Vancouver win at the Seattle Sounders.

Herdman, who entered the Whitecaps academy as a 13-year-old in 2017, has represented New Zealand 14 times at youth level and was part of its squad at the 2023 FIFA U-20 World Cup.

Olympic men’s soccer teams are limited to 18 players, at least 15 of whom must be aged 23 and under, with three overage players permitted. New Zealand’s overage players are midfielder Joe Bell (Viking FK, Norway), Michael Boxall (Minnesota United) and Sarpreet Singh (unattached). Eleven of the under-23 players have been capped at the senior level.

New Zealand will play in Group A alongside Guinea, the United States and host France.

Herdman was born in 2004 when his father was working for New Zealand Football. John Herdman left New Zealand in 2011 to coach the Canadian women’s team, switching to the men’s program in 2018. He quit Canada Soccer last August to take over Toronto FC.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 10, 224

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