By SDCN Editor
Chula Vista, CA–History will be made this weekend in Chula Vista as the USA Blind Soccer Men’s National Team made its debut on the pitch with two international friendlies against Canada.
The matches will take place Sunday and Monday at the Salt Creek Soccer Arena, located at 2710 Otay Lakes Road. The first match begins at 5 p.m.
The U.S. Association of Blind Athletes, the national governing body for the sport of blind soccer in the United States, named the first-ever USA Blind Soccer Men’s National Team roster last November after a four-day selection camp in Chula Vista.
The sport of blind soccer has been part of the Paralympic Games since 2004, but the U.S. has never fielded a team. That will all change in 2028 when Los Angeles plays host to the Olympic and Paralympic Games and the U.S. will receive an automatic entry into the blind soccer competition as the host country. Like the U.S., Canada has never competed in blind soccer at a Paralympic Games.
“We are incredibly excited that this historic day has arrived,” said U.S. Association of Blind Athletes CEO Molly Quinn. “Just 14 months after being named the NGB for blind soccer, we are fielding a team in an international friendly. This is a major achievement and milestone on the road to our team’s Paralympic Games debut in Los Angeles in 2028.”
The U.S. Men’s National Team roster features eight athletes with visual impairments along with two sighted goalkeepers and two alternates. The eight athletes with visual impairments are Noah Beckman (Columbus, Ohio), Cody Kirchner (Columbia, S.C.), Ahmed Shareef (Staten Island, N.Y.), Ricardo Castaneda (Fort Worth, Texas), Kevin Brown (Falls Church, Va.), Antoine Craig (Richmond, Va.), David Brown (Chula Vista, Calif.) and Alvaro Mora Arellano (Phoenix, Ariz.). The two sighted goalkeepers are Brandt Herron (Palm Coast, Fla.) and Kyle Knott (Brevard, N.C.). Alternates are Charles Catherine (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and John Marquez (Fort Worth, Texas).
Both matches are open to the public and admission is free. The March 19 match will be live-streamed on the USABA Facebook and YouTube channels.