Colorado Rapids Soccer Club announced today the sending of four players on loan to Charlotte Independence of the United Soccer League (USL). Per the Right of Recall incorporated in all four agreements, Colorado Rapids retain the right to recall each player at any point during the MLS regular season, subject to MLS roster compliance guidelines.
“For any player, getting meaningful minutes in a competitive environment is crucial for development,” said Rapids Executive Vice President and General Manager Pádraig Smith. “Charlotte will provide them that opportunity, and we look forward to watching how each of these players adapt and improve while there. It’s a great opportunity.”
Sam Vines, 18, joined the Rapids organization in 2013 as a 13-year-old. A versatile, attack-minded left back, his performances for the Rapids Academy also earned him call-ups to the U-14, U-15, U-16, U-18 and U-20 United States Youth National Teams. In 2017, Vines was selected to the National Development Academy Best XI as one of the top young players in the country. He is also the youngest homegrown signing in Colorado Rapids history.
Caleb Calvert, 21, appeared in 12 matches for the Rapids last season, including three starts. The Wrightwood, CA native recorded his first MLS goal on the road versus Philadelphia Union on May 20, and his first assist on Alan Gordon's game-winning goal against the Portland Timbers on June 17. This will mark Calvert's fourth loan stint with Charlotte after spending time with the USL club in each of the previous three seasons.
Ricardo Perez, 22, signed a Homegrown contract with the Rapids on January 6, 2017, having spent his college career at Creighton where he netted 15 goals and tallied nine assists in 88 games - the third-most matches played in program history. He was a part of the Rapid’s’ gameday roster for the trip to the New York Red Bulls on March 11 of last year, but is yet to make his MLS debut. Born in Mexico but raised in Fort Collins, Perez first joined the Rapids Academy in 2008 at the U-14 level.
Andrew Dykstra, 32, signed with the Rapids on February 8, 2018, following a season in which the Hawaii native made three starts in four appearances for Sporting Kansas City, recording one shutout. Dykstra played all 120 minutes in a 1-0 extra-time loss at the Houston Dynamo in the Western Conference Knockout Round on October 26, making four saves and stopping a penalty kick in extra time. In total, Dykstra tallied 301 minutes played, 10 saves and a 1.50 goals against average.
The Rapids are set to kick off their 2018 Major League Soccer campaign this Saturday, March 10, on the road versus New England Revolution. The match can viewed live on Altitude 2 at 11:30 AM. For more information on the upcoming season, please visit ColoradoRapids.com, or follow us on Twitter @ColoradoRapids.
Transaction: Colorado Rapids (MLS) – March 5, 2018 – Rapids loan defender Sam Vines, forward Caleb Calvert, midfielder Ricardo Perez, and goalkeeper Andrew Dykstra to Charlotte Independence of USL.