FC Tulsa has signed 14-year-old midfielder Renan Mendoza to a USL Academy contract, making him the youngest player to join the club's First Team roster in its history. | Photo courtesy FC Tulsa
TULSA, Okla. – FC Tulsa announced on Thursday the club had added Tulsa native Renan Mendoza as a USL Academy signing for the 2023 season, making the 14-year-old the youngest player in the club’s history. The transaction is pending league and federation approval.
A Union High School freshman, Mendoza concluded the 2022 season as a trialist for FC Tulsa and rejoined the squad this spring for preseason. His performances caught the eye of new Tulsa Head Coach Blair Gavin and resulted in Mendoza becoming the club’s first Academy signing of the season.
“Renan is someone who at his young age shows a lot of composure and joy for the game,” said Gavin. “We are excited to work with him and help him to develop his skills moving forward.”
Born on June 30, 2008, Mendoza joined Tulsa Soccer Club (TSC) in 2017 where he has competed at the youth level for the past seven years and led his squad in scoring each season.
In addition to his time at TSC, Mendoza was named to the U-15 United States Futsal National Team to compete in Lisbon, Portugal in 2022. The attacking midfielder also participated in the 2021 Portimão International Cup held in Portugal, where he represented Cadence FC and notched six goals and two assists in six matches en route to a fourth-place finish.
“I am excited about the opportunity of playing with experienced pro players and trying to learn as much as I can from them on and off the pitch,” said Mendoza. “When I first started training, I was timid and nervous, but as the training sessions went on, the players around me were making me feel comfortable and giving good advice that helped improve my game. I also would like to thank God, my family, my coaches, TSC and Tulsa Soccer Academy, and Coach John Michael who’s helped me since I was eight.”