Forward Madison FC has signed 19-year old midfielder Michael Vang to its 2020 roster, the club announced in a press release Thursday. Vang has previously played with U.S. youth national teams and spent the latter half of 2019 in the Portugese third division.
Madison head coach Daryl Shore said Vang’s creativity on the ball should give Forward fans plenty of reason to be excited about their new Flamingo.
“We think we may have found a diamond in the rough with Mike,” Shore said in a statement. “Provided he works hard every day and continues to develop his game, Mike could compete for minutes right away with us.”
For Vang, who impressed Shore at the Flamingos’ invite combine earlier this month, this moment has been a long time in the making.
“It’s an amazing feeling, signing my first pro contract,” Vang said in a statement. “It’s something I’ve been dreaming about since a young age, and I’m going to do my best to climb up the ranks of the team.”
Vang grew up in Saint Paul, Minn. and played in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy at Shattuck-Saint Mary’s boarding school, earning call-ups along the way to U.S. youth national teams. In 2018, Vang decided to forgo college to start his soccer career in Europe. Vang signed for S.U. 1o Dezembro, a third-division club in Portugal, and after spending a year with their U-19s, was promoted to the first team in 2019.
Vang, who will likely play for the Flamingos as a central midfielder, said he’s ready to take his shot in Madison.
“I like being the playmaker, creating for my teammates and also for myself,” Vang said. “Looking at the games from afar online, it seemed amazing, so I’m excited to get in and start working.”
Forward Madison FC opens the season March 28 at Richmond Kickers, with its first home league match of the spring set for April 11 against Toronto FC II.