COMMERCE CITY, Colo. — Colorado Rapids forward Kimani Stewart-Baynes has been called up to represent Canada at the 2024 Concacaf Under-20 Championship Qualifiers, Canada Soccer announced today. The three-game group stage will take place in Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago, from Feb. 23-27, and serve as a qualifier to the 2024 Concacaf Under-20 Championship this summer.
Stewart-Baynes, 19, is currently in his first season with the Rapids after being selected fourth overall by the club in the 2024 MLS SuperDraft from the University of Maryland. During this preseason, Stewart-Baynes has made three appearances for the Rapids, scoring two goals and providing an assist.
During his collegiate career, Stewart-Baynes scored three goals and delivered seven assists as a freshman at the University of Maryland in his 14-game debut season. The Toronto, Ontario, native was dubbed Big Ten Freshman of the Year, a unanimous selection for the Big Ten All-Freshman Team and named to Top Drawer Soccer’s Freshman Best XI Second Team. Prior to his time with the Terrapins, Stewart-Baynes played for Vaughan Soccer Club, where he notched 17 goals in 14 matches for the U-19 team to win the League 1 U-19 championship. He also attended Father Henry Carr Catholic Secondary School, where he added nine goals and seven assists. Stewart-Baynes brings speed to the Rapids, recording an 11-second 100m dash as a junior in high school.
Canada has been drawn in Group D, where they will face Dominica, St. Vincent & The Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago. Canada will gather in Trinidad & Tobago on Friday, Feb. 16 in preparation for the Qualifiers. The team will begin the group stage against Dominica on Friday, Feb. 23, followed by St. Vincent & The Grenadines on Sunday, Feb. 25, and concluding against Trinidad & Tobago on Tuesday, Feb. 27.
Following group stage play, teams that top each of the six groups will claim their spot at this summer’s 2024 Concacaf Under-20 Championship.
Canada is looking to secure their 25th appearance at the Concacaf Under-20 Championship having won the tournament twice (1986, 1996). At the 2022 edition of the bi-annual competition, Canada advanced from their group but were eliminated in the Round of 16 to Guatemala on penalties.