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Mitja Ilenič, Tomás Romero receive international call-ups

Ilenič started in all three NYCFC league games to date, but he will miss the March 22 matchup against FC Cincinnati.

New York City FC right-back Mitja Ilenič | Courtesy New York City FC

New York City FC defender Mitja Ilenič and goalkeeper Tomás Romero have been called up by their national teams for the March international break.

Ilenič was called up by the Slovenia U-21 squad, and will join a squad fighting to advance out of the group stage in the Euro U-21 qualifications. Slovenia has nine points after four matches, which places the second in the group. They will play Bosnia and Herzegovina on Friday, March 22 at 1 pm ET at Mestni stadion Fazanerija in Slovenia.

The call-up means that the 19-year-old Ilenič, a starter in all three of New York City's league games this season, will miss the club's matchup with FC Cincinnati on Saturday, March 22.

Euro U-21 Group H

Group H table as of March 14, 2024

Ilenič has seven caps with the U-21 team and six with the U-19 team. In January, he received his first call-up to the Slovenian national senior team, and came on as a second-half substitute in a 0-1 win over the United States men's national team in a friendly played in Texas.

Romero, who was born in Cherry Hill, NJ, was called up by El Salvador. The 23-year-old NYCFC backup goalkeeper made his first appearance for El Salvador in 2016. He now 12 caps for the senior team, and was the starting goalkeeper in El Salvador's 2-0 road loss to Guatemala in a CONCACAF Nations League group stage on September 7, 2023. Romero was El Salvador's best player on the field that day, when he logged five saves and saved a penalty.

El Salvador, currently ranked #81 in the world by FIFA, will play three friendlies in the window. First, they will face Bonaire, a Dutch territory in the Caribbean with a population of 24,000, on March 20. Then they will play Argentina on March 22 and Honduras on March 26.