Rangers interest as Orange County wonderkid in US men's team call-up
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Rangers interest as Orange County wonderkid in US men's team call-up

Rangers’ partnership with American USL side Orange County has seen several players travel across the Atlantic and Gers fans will have an eye the situation surrounding USA talent Kobi Henry.

The 17-year-old defender has just been called up to the USA men’s national team for the first time and was part of the side who’ve just sealed the USL Championship.

A towering 6ft2 presence, defender Kobi Henry joins seven youngsters who’ve been called up to the USMNT for the first time and this is recognition of his solid form over the season.

Kobi Henry joins Jonathan Gomez, Taylor Booth, Kevin Paredes, Gabriel Slonina, Taylor Booth, and John Pulskamp in the squad for a US-based December camp which will culminate in a friendly match against Bosnia and Herzegovina on December 19th.

Florida born Kobi Henry made his debut last season as a 16-year-old, coming on to face LA Galaxy II in August 2020 and going on to make four appearances in total.

This campaign the centre-back has made a starting slot his own, playing close to 1500 minutes, starting 16 games and even scoring his first goal as a professional player.

What’s more Kobi Henry doesn’t turn 18 until next April.

Kobi Henry wouldn’t be the first Orange County talent to catch Rangers’ eye

The likes of Francis Jacobs, Aaron Cervantes and Diego Lopez have come from Orange County to join Rangers on trial in the past and fans will be keeping a look-out for the progress of Henry.

The link-up between the two sides allows both clubs to take advantage of commercial opportunities on either side of the Atlantic with youth development a big focus for both teams.

As part of the agreement – first signed in December 2019 – ex-Gers youths Matthew Shiels, Cammy Palmer and Danny Finlayson all headed to California and were even subject to a special ESPN documentary.

Orange County are one of three clubs with whom Rangers have a strategic partnership, the Gers also teaming up Indian Super League side Bengaluru and German giant Hamburger SV.

Kobi Henry also isn’t the only promising USA youth talent at Orange County with Rangers reportedly agreeing a deal surrounding a 16-year-old wonderkid.