The Earthquakes' youngest-ever goal-scorer reportedly is on the radar of one of the biggest clubs in the world.
Cade Cowell, a 17-year-old forward who came up through San Jose's academy, has attracted the attention of Spanish giants Barcelona as the club ramps up its North American scouting, ESPN's Moises Llorens, Sam Marsden, Rodrigo Faez and Alex Kirkland reported Friday.
Cowell made his first-team debut for the Earthquakes on March 23, 2019 in a friendly against Mexican side Monterrey. He was 15 at the time, having signed as a homegrown player with the Earthquakes two months prior.
His MLS debut came on July 10 during the MLS Is Back tournament in Orlando, Florida, and Cowell has started or appeared in all but two of the Earthquakes' games since the end of the tournament. Cowell scored his first MLS goal in his first career start on Aug. 29, and he picked up his first assist in San Jose's 4-0 demolition of LA Galaxy on Wednesday.
Sergiño Dest, 19, became the first American to start for Barcelona when he lined up at right back in manager Ronald Koeman's XI on Saturday against Getafe. The Catalan club have Cowell, 19-year-old attacking midfielder Brendan Aaronson and 18-year-old forward Ginaluca Busio "all under consideration," according to ESPN, so Dest could soon have company.
Cowell only has played 362 minutes -- or the equivalent of about four full matches -- this season, and Transfermarkt estimates his market value at $385,000. That's all to say that it is very early to say the 17-year-old is Camp Nou-bound.
But if Barcelona reportedly are watching his career with great interest, Earthquakes supporters and American soccer fans must do the same.