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A young soccer prodigy has taken the soccer world by storm by becoming the youngest player ever to be signed to a semi-professional contract in the United States.

Joining Some of the Best American Soccer Players

Brighton Lee Sagal, at just 12 years old (recently turned 13), has joined the San Fernando Valley FC, a semi-professional soccer team playing in the United Premier Soccer League (UPSL).

Sagal hails from Beverly Hills. Home-schooled, Sagal has shown exceptional talent and skill that has earned him a place in the San Fernando Valley FC. Brighton had been training with Manchester City’s Select Academy Team in the UK for the past 6 months before returning back to Los Angeles to further pursue his soccer adventure.

San Fernando Valley FC Welcomes Brighton

Sagal’s passion for soccer runs deep in his veins, thanks to his dad, who played professional soccer in Germany and Sweden, starting his own career with college soccer at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. It is Sagal’s dream to one day play for Manchester City in the English Premier League. Sagal’s father Jared believes that this signing is really about providing a young player a rare opportunity to be integrated into a professional culture. “I am excited to be a part of the San Fernando Valley FC and grateful for the opportunity to play in the UPSL,” said Sagal. “I want to thank my family and coaches for their support and belief in me.”

The San Fernando Valley FC is thrilled to have Sagal on their team. Team leaders believe that his high soccer IQ enables him to compete with bigger, faster, and more mature players. Brighton went through a grueling 6 weeks of pre-season with the team and deserves to be here. This is not a publicity stunt. We want to give a young talented player a shot at playing with the big boys. This is the only way the US will ever really start developing players that can compete with the best of the best!

“We are excited to have Sagal on board and believe he has a bright future ahead of him,” said the team’s administrator, Gueorgui Hristov, during the signing conference. “It takes courage to step on the pitch with players that are much older but this kid has no fear of that” Sagal’s signing to the semi-professional team at such a young age is not only a testament to his skill and hard work but also a sign of the growing interest in soccer in the United States.