Some of the biggest clubs in the world have been scouting Seattle Sounders Homegrown Player Reed Baker Whiting, according to a report at MLSsoccer.com. Among the teams reportedly showing interest in the 16-year-old midfielder are Liverpool, Manchester City and Borussia Dortmund.
A team source said they were unaware of any direct inquiries about Baker-Whiting, but did lend credence to the report by noting that several younger players in the organization were being actively scouted by European teams.
That European teams may be keeping an eye on Baker-Whiting without showing more formalized interest would make a good deal of sense, though, as he’s unable to be registered by a foreign team until he turns 18. Americans who have previously moved to foreign teams earlier are able to do so only after obtaining a second passport.
Still, interest in Baker-Whiting is just more evidence to support the Sounders’ decision to make him the second-youngest Homegrown signing in franchise history earlier this year. Shortly after signing, Baker-Whiting made his MLS debut, where he became the sixth youngest player to ever appear in a league match. Since then, he’s made three more appearances, including two starts. Baker-Whiting has also played about 1,000 minutes over parts of two seasons with the Tacoma Defiance, including nine starts this year.
Baker-Whiting has mostly played as a more advanced midfielder and seems to project as an 8. Although he’s yet to get on the scoresheet, he does show good offensive instincts through both his runs and vision.
“Reed came to our attention last year because he fits a Seattle Sounder profile of hard work, grit, determination and his ability to adapt to the First Team training environment,” Sounders head coach Brian Schmetzer said in a press release when Baker-Whiting first signed. “We kept him in our First Team bubble last year, similar to Josh Atencio, and have seen the development in his overall understanding of our tactics and style of play. He has earned a chance to play for our club, and I hope he continues to improve in the physical and technical areas required to play at our level.”