D.C. United today announced the signing of 18-year-old defensive midfielder Jeremy Garay to a Homegrown contract. Garay, a regular starter for Loudoun United, will begin his MLS contract (which runs through 2024, with options for 2025 and 2026) in the 2022 season. He is the seventh Homegrown player on United’s roster, and the 16th in club history.
With his DCU deal not beginning until next year, Garay will continue at Loudoun for the rest of this season. His signing was initially reported by Steven Goff of the Washington Post.
“This signing continues to show the value and strength of the Pathway to Pro Program that we’ve developed at the club,” said United GM Lucy Rushton in a team press release. “As the seventh Homegrown player on the current roster, this is another example of how the Pathway to Pro Program is enabling us to successfully develop young talent at the club.”
Garay has started all nine of Loudoun’s games this season, setting himself up as a key piece of the puzzle for head coach Ryan Martin. Since making his pro debut just under two full years ago (July 7, 2019), the Woodbridge, VA native has made 23 appearances at the USL Championship level. Since joining United’s academy set-up in 2017 via Pathway to Pro affiliate Arlington Soccer Association, Garay has steadily climbed through the age groups before signing an academy deal with Loudoun.
“We have been impressed with Jeremy’s development and progression over this past year with Loudoun United,” said United technical director/Loudoun GM Stewart Mairs in a release. “He has composure beyond his years in the midfield and we’re looking forward to continuing to work closely with him with the ultimate goal of getting him minutes with the first team.”
“We are extremely proud of the work ethic and commitment that Jeremy has demonstrated over the last few years to get to this point,” said United academy director Dave Sanford. “This is a special moment for him and his family and we’re looking forward to watching what he does at the next level. Jeremy signing a Homegrown contract continues to show how successful the Pathway to Pro Program has been in recent years. We would like to thank Arlington Soccer Association who helped build Jeremy’s soccer foundation at a young age and played a pivotal role in Jeremy earning his first MLS contract.”