On the day of his 14th birthday, Maximo Carrizo has become the youngest recruit in Major League Soccer history after he signed his first professional contract with New York City FC.
The midfielder, who was born in 2008 [yes, we feel very old], joined New York City's academy system in 2018 at the age of 10 after initially impressing with local team FC Westchester.
He continued to make an impact at youth level and earlier this year, Carrizo was invited to take part in NYCFC’s first-team pre-season in 2022 before earning a historic homegrown contract.
As a result of signing a deal with the MLS side, Carrizo has become the youngest professional athlete for team sports in the United States.
“It’s an honor for me and my family to make MLS history by becoming the league’s youngest player to sign a first-team contract," Carrizo told the club's official website.
"This is an incredible club with amazing people. I’d like to thank everyone at NYCFC for believing in me and helping me take the next step in my career.
"I know I’m young and I have a lot to improve, but I am ready for the challenge and will work hard every day to show everyone what I am capable of."
Maximo Carrizo just became the youngest professional athlete for team sports in the USA, signing a 5-year deal with #NYCFC.— The LA Vox (@TheLaVox) February 28, 2022
Carrizo, born in Connecticut in 2008, is turning 14 today and has been handed a professional contract as a birthday gift. pic.twitter.com/gdgDFNaGkl
The 14-year-old added: “I already feel part of this club and I really believe that NYCFC is the perfect place for me to continue my development and grow on-and-off the pitch.
"It’s inspiring to see how NYCFC produces talent and how homegrown players get the opportunity to play in the first team.
"I know this will take some time, but I am willing to be patient and learn from the amazing group of players and coaches that we have at this club.”
David Lee, the club's sporting director, has said the signing of Carrizo is further proof that New York City is one of the best environments for talent to develop and thrive.
“We’re extremely happy to sign Maximo to his first professional contract, this is a historic moment for both the club and MLS," he told the club's website.
"He’s a special and extremely talented player and it’s been exciting to watch him develop over recent years in our academy.
"Maximo is now at the very start of his journey as a professional and the next stages of his development over the coming years will be ensuring he maximizes his potential through working with our coaches and all the support staff in the Academy, NYCFC II and the first team."
Featured Image Credit: New York City
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