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Mark Cartwright: We have the next Virgil van Dijk playing in the USL

By Staff, 08/18/22, 12:03PM EDT


USL Sporting Director says LouCity’s Joshua Wynder is being monitored by top European clubs

With the pedigree he’s shown for club and country, there’s no question where Louisville City FC and United States youth international standout Joshua Wynder’s future is headed. 

For USL Sporting Director Mark Cartwright, the sky is the limit.  

Speaking with Sky Sports this week, Cartwright said the 17-year-old center back is being closely followed by top clubs around Europe, including in England’s Premier League, and compared him to one of the best center backs in the game. 

“I genuinely believe we have the next Virgil van Dijk playing in our league,” Cartwright told Sky Sports News, referring to Liverpool FC’s star defender. “He's 17, playing week in, week out, and he is absolutely unbelievable – Josh Wynder, who plays for Louisville.” 

The past six months have seen the USL Championship’s transfer record broken multiple times, with former Orange County SC standout and United States youth international Kobi Henry’s June move to Ligue 1 club Stade de Reims one that could net a seven-figure fee for the defending USL Championship title holders. 

While numerous clubs are watching Wynder, Cartwright believes he could be just the start of the next wave of talented young players in the USL Championship eager to make their mark. 

“Everything they watch on TV now is the Premier League, the Bundesliga, Ligue 1,” Cartwright said. “They want to go and play in Europe.” 

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