Fall 2021 SS Magazine

Rising 17-year-old star Cade Cowell praising God as he prepares for first MLS All-Star Game

San Jose Earthquakes forward Cade Cowell is establishing himself as one of the most exciting young players in Major League Soccer, and he hasn’t even turned 18 yet.

The Ceres, California, native became the youngest signing in Earthquakes history when he inked his first professional deal in 2019 at the age of 15. He made his debut with the team that same year and got his first MLS minutes in 2020.

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Cowell quickly started gaining attention around the league, thanks in part to the goal he scored in his first start on Aug. 29:

The 17-year-old has already started 13 times in 2021, and he became the first player in the league this season to record four goals and four assists. He was recently named to the MLS All-Star team that will face the Liga MX All-Stars on Wednesday.

Cowell gave thanks to God on Instagram after being named to the team. “Beyond blessed to represent San Jose at the All Star game,” he wrote. “All glory to God.”

 

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A post shared by Cade Cowell🦁 (@cc4_official)

Last month, Cowell was called up to the U.S. national team as an injury replacement during the Gold Cup. His stay was a brief one, but it marked the second time he participated in a national team camp.

He is eligible to play for both the United States and Mexico, and told The Athletic this week he has not made any decisions about which country he wants to represent.

Though Cowell is now thriving in San Jose and reportedly drawing interest from high-profile teams in Europe, he almost ended up on a completely different path. He was planning to go to Central Catholic High School in Modesto, California, before joining the Earthquakes in 2018. And he intended to play football instead of soccer until his youth soccer coach talked him out of it.

“We had already filled out the paperwork and paid the [school] fees,” his dad, Debin, told the Ceres Courier. “He was enrolled. God had other plans for him.”

Cowell often references his faith on Instagram and has “In Jesus Name I Play” included in his bio.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Cade Cowell🦁 (@cc4_official)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Cade Cowell🦁 (@cc4_official)

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Cade Cowell🦁 (@cc4_official)

As for speculation about his future and the possibility of playing in a top European league, Cowell is trying to focus on the present and make that decision when the time comes.

“I never think about it,” he said in a May interview with goal.com. “I’ll think about it if the time ever comes. Then, if everything is real, that’s maybe when I’ll think about it, but right now, I never think about it. I just focus on the here and now.”

The Earthquakes will travel to L.A. on Friday, and would move into a playoff spot with a win over the Galaxy.

From there, Cowell won’t have to travel far for Wednesday’s All-Star Game, which will be at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles. The game is scheduled to kick off at 9:30 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on FS1.

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