LOS ANGELES -- Cameron Dunbar's start in the LA Galaxy's MLS is Back Opener may have been a surprise to some, but the 17-year-old winger's stellar performance was no shock to his Galaxy teammates.
Dunbar's energetic 66-minute shift was one of the bright spots of the Galaxy's 2-1 defeat to Portland Timbers in their MLS is Back Tournament opener. Throughout the contest, the winger was active, making intelligent runs at the defense and helping win a penalty midway through the first half.
"I think he played well. We saw him, he's a really good player, always trying to be very direct and he plays very well in one on ones," said head coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto.
"I thought he was excellent tonight. To come in at such a young age and leave his mark on the match," echoed midfielder Perry Kitchen. "It wasn't a surprise. I'm really happy with him. He's a real special talent."
As teenager looks ahead to Saturday's clash with LAFC and hopefully a bright future, Galaxy forward Javier Hernandez, himself a former youth prodigy, urges that caution and support for Dunbar.
"We need to take good care of him. He's very young not even 20, almost a child he's a very good prospect for this country he's doing a good process. He's a good player," Hernandez said."It doesn't matter if today if he had a good match or a bad match, soccer is about a long race — it's not a sprint."