Yangel Herrera will be heading for South Korea next week. (Greg Bartram/USA TODAY Sports)
Well, Yangel Herrera certainly has enjoyed one memorable week.
Not only did he make his first start for New York City FC against Columbus Crew SC, but he also scored the equalizing goal and set up the game-winner in a 3-2 road triumph Saturday night.
Now, he has been called up by Venezuela for the Under-20 World Cup in South Korea.
Herrera will join the Venezuelan squad after NYCFC’s home game against Atlanta United Sunday and return to the Major League Soccer side after the South American national team finishes the competition.
The U-20 World Cup kicks off May 20, which means the 19-year-old Herrera will miss road matches at FC Dallas, Real Salt Lake and Orlando City SC.
The Venezuelans, who finished third in South American qualifying, will play Germany, Vanuatu and Mexico in Group B.
After City’s win in Columbus, Herrera talked about his experience.
“I feel super happy for the game we had and the three points we managed to get over here as visitors,” he said. “We’re going home really happy and really calm. Thank God for the confidence the coach had to start me today. We’re going home really excited. Thank God we had a great game. The team and I are going to continue the victory and we’re going to keep working to stay on top.”
Herrera started in place of Italian international midfielder Andrea Pirlo, who has experienced a rocky start to the Major League Soccer season.
“I think the characteristics of the players are different – when you want to be a bit more solid defensively, this is why I choose Yangel,” NYCFC head coach Patrick Vieira said. “There will be a time when we have more possession that I will want players to create and to help to build up from the back and then I will go with Andrea.”