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Report links Bolton, Tottenham to (very) young American goalkeeper


A Sunday morning report from the Daily Mirror has linked Tottenham Hotspur with young American goalkeeper Charlie Horton. Following the report's publication, Alan Nixon, who originally wrote the piece, added after the fact that Bolton Wanderers are also interested in the very tall 18-year-old. Bolton Wanderers already have Andy Lonergan and Adam Bogdan as the two first team goalkeepers with Rob Lainton and Jay Lynch heading up the reserves. Jan-Ole Sievers is the U-18 goalkeeper and is the same age as Horton.

Charlie Horton, standing six feet, five inches tall, is a United States Soccer Development Academy graduate, having spent two years at the IMG Soccer Academy. The academy boasts a number of high-profile alumni including, but not limited to, Tim Howard, Eddie Johnson, DeMarcus Beasley, Michael Parkhurst, and former Bolton Wanderer Hidetoshi Nakata (who played 32 times for the Trotters during a year-long loan from Fiorentina).

The young goalkeeper is already making a name for himself, having spent a weekend on trial with Chelsea in July 2010 before spending two weeks with Manchester United that August. At that point, Horton was 15-years-old and stood a (relatively) short five feet, ten inches.

Horton has also spent years training with Dan Gaspar, a man whose name you may not recognize but who has worked with some of the world's top teams. Gaspar is generally an assistant and goalkeeping coach who has worked alongside Carlos Queiroz for nearly 20 years. The two co-authored USSF's Project 2010 in 1998, as a long-term blueprint for the growth of US Soccer. Gaspar has coached Portugal U16s, U18s, Sporting Club Portugal Nagoya Grampus (under Arsene Wenger), NY/NJ Metrostars, South Africa, Portugal, SL Benfica, FC Porto, Portugal, and is currently with Iran.

According to the Mirror's report, Tottenham have invited Horton over for a pre-season training stint with Brad Friedel.

Horton has just committed his near future to the University of North Carolina to play for the Division I team (the top flight of college football/soccer). UNC boasts a number of current MLS players as graduates including Dax McCarty of Red Bull New York and Sheanon Williams of the Philadelphia Union as well as Eric Lichaj, who was recently released by Aston Villa.