USMNT and Spain prospect Kochen agrees to 2028 contract with Barcelona

Diego Kochen, a 17-year-old United States youth international goalkeeper, has agreed to a new long-term contract with Barcelona that will keep him at the club until 2028. Born in Miami to parents from Venezuela and Peru, Kochen has been training and traveling with the first team on a regular basis since November, and even had the chance to make his first-team debut in December. He will be promoted to Barça Atlétic and will wear the No. 24 shirt, as part of the new agreement. Additionally, he is one of two young Americans currently at Barça, with the other being Adrian Simon Gill. Both Kochen and Gill are aiming to become the third and fourth Americans to play for Barcelona’s first team. This adds to the growing profile of American soccer players making their mark on the global stage.
Diego Kochen, the United States youth international goalkeeper, has reached a new long-term agreement with Barcelona that extends his contract with the club until 2028. The formal signing of the deal is scheduled to take place on March 19, when Kochen turns 18, as announced by the Catalan club on Friday.

As per the terms of the agreement, Kochen will be elevated from the Under-19 team to Barça Atlétic, a team that competes in the third tier of Spanish football. He will assume the No. 24 shirt for this team. Despite his young age, Kochen has been regularly training and traveling with the first team since November, following an injury to regular goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen.

Kochen had the opportunity to make his debut for Barcelona in December during a friendly match against the Liga MX side Club América in Dallas, where he played for 29 minutes. Initially joining Barcelona’s La Masia academy in 2019, Kochen signed his first professional contract in 2022 at the age of 16. Born in Miami to parents from Venezuela and Peru, he is also eligible to play for Spain, having lived in the country since 2018.

Currently representing the U.S. at the youth level, Kochen has attracted the attention of the director for Spain’s youth teams, Francis Hernández, who is attempting to convince him to play for La Roja. Additionally, Adrian Simon Gill, another young American at Barcelona, is aiming to break into the first team. He has been with the club since turning 18 last month and has a contract until 2025.

Kochen and Gill hope to follow in the footsteps of fellow Americans Konrad De La Fuente and Sergiño Dest, who have played for Barcelona’s first team in the past. De La Fuente made three appearances for the club before departing in 2021, while Dest, currently on loan at PSV Eindhoven, has accumulated 68 games since joining from Ajax in 2020 for a transfer fee of €20 million.

David Richard

Hello, I am David. I have worked in several sports magazines specializing in football, and I have a great love for this sport and a passion for following itI will do my best to bring you the latest news.