FGCU soccer’s Aaron Guillen signs with FC Dallas
FGCU added another professional to its increasingly more impressive repertoire.
Recently graduated FGCU men’s soccer defender Aaron Guillen, 22, joined the professional ranks on Tuesday, Jan. 5 when he signed with Major League Soccer club FC Dallas.
“It’s a dream come true,” Guillen said. “It’s been something that I’ve been working toward since I was little. You get to see these players on TV every weekend. It’s exciting to think that you could be next to them and be at their level and train with them.”
Guillen, who returned to his hometown of El Paso following his departure from FGCU, will join FC Dallas as a center back, after spending his summers working his way through the club’s Homegrown Player program.
In high school, Guillen was one of the first players to join the program, which aims to “raise” and allows teams to sign local products directly from their academy to their professional team. The defender played for FC Dallas’ U-18 team and helped them reach the US Soccer Development Academy national championship in 2012.
This previous season, FC Dallas had one of the best finishes in the club’s history, finishing first in the MLS’ Western Conference after defeating the Portland Timbers in the conference final.
Players will report to Frisco, Texas to begin training with FC Dallas on Saturday, Jan. 23 where the team will travel to Phoenix, Arizona and Medellín, Colombia during a six-week preseason training camp.
FC Dallas will open its 21st season at 2 p.m. March 6 at Toyota Stadium against the Philadelphia Union.
“I’m really excited to start,” Guillen said. “We’ll see what happens. It’s a matter of what the coaches decide.”
Guillen joins teammate Rodrigo Saravia, a former FGCU center midfielder and 2015 Atlantic Sun Conference player of the year, in making an impression in the MLS professional ranks.
This weekend, Saravia will participate in the 2016 Adidas MLS Player Combine, a showcase that allows collegiate players to compete against each other in front of scouts from 20 MLS clubs for a chance to qualify for the MLS Super Draft in Baltimore on Jan. 14.
The combine will be held in Fort Lauderdale from Jan. 7 to 12.
“I believe that he’s got a great chance,” Guillen said. “He’s a great player and has a huge heart and never stops working for what he wants. I hope the best for him.”
Savaria is the first FGCU product to be invited to the combine and third A-Sun player since 2007. Last summer, Savaria represented his home country of Guatemala, playing for the U-23 National Team.
A four-year starter with the Eagles, Guillen led the team to NCAA appearances in 2012 and 2014 and was named the conference Defensive Player of the Year and was named to the NSCAA All-Southeast Region second team his senior year.
Guillen credits FGCU’s coaches for his successes.
“They gave me a great opportunities, believed in me and made me a part of the family,” Guillen said. “(Being signed) is a dream come true.”