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Monday, August 14, 2017

U18 Girls Youth Soccer

This page is focused on Under 18 girls youth soccer, primarily in Region 1 but everyone is invited to share and post.

Teams face increased competition for the top players, (who are increasingly attending college showcases).

More teams consolidate and the best teams--academy soccer, club soccer and high school teams--battle to attract and retain the right player mix.

Stay tuned. This is bound to be good.

2,360 comments:

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Anonymous said...

Some input from NY. ECNL is without a doubt the best platform for D1 access but plenty of exceptions that cannot be ignored.
2 Notre Dame Commits - Lagrange EDP, Quickstrike NPL
3 UConn commits- Quickstrike NPL (3)from same team
1 Duke -HBC plus several other from HBC to quality programs
These are just a few notable examples.
You can bet ECNL clubs would be proud to add these type of commitments to their websites.

Anonymous said...

NEFC was an NPL team (is now an ECNL going GDA). In certain areas that don't have ECNL, NPL is the highest tier.

Anonymous said...

With some clubs not participating in ECNL anymore, NPL will be getting busier, too.

Anonymous said...

644 They are rounding errors. They absolutely can be ignored. ECNL Clubs have those commits and its not about the commits really. Its about the exposure. The kids ability, academic ambition and a whole host of other things determine the school she commits to.

This BS of putting one school vs another is just that. BS. If you get the exposure you want and the school you desire. Bravo !! I dont care where you played. It does not mean that another kid following the same path will get the same choices.

Anonymous said...

Agreed (and I'm not the NPL/NY person). Some of it is timing, too. If a school needs a certain player/style/position, that helps as well.

Switching themes, what about the amount of USSF/NWSL gals leaving to play overseas. So to be the complete player, one needs to play overseas, too I guess.

Anonymous said...

6:44

Manhattan NPL player to Indiana
Heard a non ECNL 2018 to Villanova

They're all around.

Anonymous said...

Yes and more. That was just someone trying to remind everyone what we already know.

Anonymous said...

Will be interesting if the national league improves with the Gda. Will NPL teams decide to hedge their bets and also do usysa proud grams like R1PL and state cup. Will usysa gain ground. This year they expanded it and there were some pretty bad teams in it with huge goal differentials. Maybe the quality level will rise.

Anonymous said...

1:48 PM

I think there is recruiting availbale at all levels, my question (in relation to the GDA/ECNL/USYS conversations) is where will the Full Ride D1 money go as far as recruits. You indicated that a move from USYS to ECNL was a boost, so I would believe that ECNL to GDA would be a boost as well. I think for D2 and private schools the higher the GPA, Class Rank, and Test scores the easier it will be for a coach to persuade academic money into a player's offer.

Anonymous said...

Yes. I would think GDA, first. However, as you noted and I have always believed, there is a lot of soccer out there at various levels. My kid, full ride top school (soccer & academics). Just noting how the move benefited her and us. But, it has to work for all the parties.

Anonymous said...

i dont think full ride necessarily correlates to best players. At some very desirable schools, some of the best kids take less $$. Unless you are truly elite level, the sweet spot for big $$ is not always the best soccer schools. Its the ones below that level who feel they have to overpay for talent that may take less to go to say Duke et al.

You cannot look at this stuff in a general way. Every kids is different and her circumstances unique. just do what right for you and you cant go wrong.

Anonymous said...

http://www.socceramerica.com/article/72332/anson-dorrance-on-girls-da-vs-ecnl-and-why-the.html

Interesting to me that so many trot out Pugh as a poster child for the current system. In country this size, there are always going to be player produced. It is not a powerful argument to point out one outlier. The question should be how do we consistently encourage a love of the game for younger kids. If you do that, then the quality will increase across the board. he does allude to that, but coaching is only part of it. For me, it starts in the home.

Anonymous said...

Good article
Concerning to see his comment that US soccer not a fan of college coaches?

Anonymous said...

840 I think his comment is a reference to the Red Shirt / U-20 debacle.

Anonymous said...

Probably true. I find it a lame comment though. If ECNL was fielding NT teams, then the comparison can be made.

Anonymous said...

US Soccer not being a fan of college coaches is interesting. If you think about it the goal of College coaches is to win based on their methods and style of coaching and play, to be successful as a team, not to help build a national team. The college coaching ranks are competing against each other. I would think US soccer may want to look at the most successful programs and emulate them instead of alienating. Dorance wants to win and he has a certain style of play that most likely does not fit the US/FIFA mold. I think US soccer needs to be upgraded from the Top down. There needs to be a new head of USSF, 10+ years has been long enough to have a FIFA appointed president muddy the waters and provide circular logic for the National program. Our boys youth academy program has not produced many International high level players. The average age of World cup participating National teams is between 25 and 28 years old with the US right in the middle. The difference is in the US the goal for most soccer players is college not National team where in Argentina, Brazil, Spain, Croatia, the goal is to become a professional, or play internationally. US training from u-little is gearing players to this mentality burning players out once they get to the median age. (statistics from the mens side)

Anonymous said...

Part of it is there's no such thing as playing soccer in college in Europe, South America etc..Go pro or stay home :)

Anonymous said...

8:15 - I agree with you, but in her case vs. multiple offers that is what occurred. And these were/are highly sought after schools/programs. This is ancillary to my main point which is the move to ECNL was quite beneficial.

Anonymous said...

857 Not sure I agree. If we are talking girls. The goal of a player SHOULD be to be as good as they possibly can be. The problem is our current system does not demand excellence for success. It rewards mediocrity. You do not have to be an excellent player to be rewarded. If you goal is excellence then everything else follows.

Even the GDA is going to contain several mediocre players wo have no chance at all of EVER representing the Full NT. It will contain some players whos max upside would be a bench role for a mediocre soccer school. This is not a knock on the kids, its reality. the USSF will then tell you that this is elite. Hardly.

The bar is just too low here and as long as it all about Parents funding the experience it will continue.

Anonymous said...

And, forgot to add, most likely some package $$ coming academically. Shouldn't care as long as the bottom line is the bottom line.

Anonymous said...

9:16 AM

Would you add to your statement, and also a good coach? Our move to the ECNL was great as well, then the coaches changed. Basically U15 was great, U16 was horrible, U17 is getting better, but having 3 coaches in 3 years was not an optimal situation and caused some loss of traction. The club realized too late that the man they had coaching was not fulfilling his full responsibilities to the team, they did "reassign" him but a lot of damage was done to quite a few players. Unfourtunately this is something that may also happen at the next level.

Anonymous said...

9:17 - don't you think that is why GDA is motoring along? Less political; well somewhat less. It won't be ECNL Board of Directors exclusive.

Anonymous said...

9:22 - what do you mean next level? GDA or college? Wow. Why did you stay?

Anonymous said...

925 Unfortunately I dont. The USSF is every bit as political, if not worse with the carrot of YNT call ups. I dont think the Dorrace article says much, but I do agree with him that producing an environment that encourages kids to aspire to excellence needs collaboration . Suggesting you can do that starting at u-14 is complete nonsense.

Anonymous said...

Isn't that the old school birth year of identifying? I say old school, because I think some have learned that you can't speculate how a child will mature or genetics. But, as someone posted previously, many sports are steering kids to be exclusive at an early age. Soccer isn't any different.

Anonymous said...

Is it true that DA will follow professional rules?
18 dress and only 3 subs per game?
Tell me that can't be true for the younger ages???

Anonymous said...

FIFA rules
Yes it's true
Substituted then done

Anonymous said...

May want to reach out to DOC of club of interest re this. We heard that everyone will get a decent amount of playing time throughout the season. It's a rule.

Anonymous said...

Game Operations*

Technical Staff Area: all Academy teams may not have more than five (5) Technical Staff in the Technical Area during competitions

Each player must start a minimum of 25% of regular season games

Anonymous said...

Some of the rule are interesting considering the USSF dont follow them in their own NT camps. What you are missing in that quote is who is going to monitor it AND what will stop the Club doctoring the numbers they submit ? Im sorry, but this just shows how clueless the people making the USSF decisions are. Why would the International competition rules have anything to do with the development of 99 pct of the players? we are supposed to be developing players, adapting to Intl rules is NOT the problem. Playing quality soccer is. Changing the sub rules will have ZERO impact. In fact it may well mean that fitter players will be preferred to ones who may have to work harder on fitness, but have real potential.

The whole DA thing is setting up to be a massive let down, if its not already.

Anonymous said...

DA has been in existence for 10 years.
Why acting like this is all new?

Anonymous said...

11:56 - and the world isn't flat either. History is full of naysayers. You don't like the GDA or US Soccer. We get it. Nothing is perfect, but they aren't starting from scratch either. As the above posted noted, they have been doing it already AND they were very much involved in the ECNL blueprint. This is not new.

Anonymous said...

doing it where? Please enlighten me. DA has not been existence for girls for 10 yrs and the boys DA was not built on an existing ECNL-like foundation. They are totally starting from scratch. You cannot compare the DA and the GDA.

Please explain what the existing USSF decision makers have done to make anyone think they are to be trusted in guiding our Youth to better things?

Anonymous said...

Put the crack pipe down 12:57

Anonymous said...

102 I see rational debate is over . I knew ti was too good to last.

Anonymous said...

US Women’s soccer still has somewhat of an identity and traction. Men’s soccer has neither. The DA has been in existence for 10 years with no great accolades with their biggest successes coming in the Gold cup. No US man has ever appeared on a FIFA player of the year award ballot let alone finish on top or in the final voting. So yeah, lets follow that model with the Women’s side, let’s see, 2 WC championships and 4 Olympic Gold Medals. Yes the world is catching up, but somewhat by emulating what the US is doing with their women’s program. All of the posturing between ECNL, GDA and whatever else is highly subjective. I think what we saw with Sundhage leaving and Ellis coming in was somewhat of a turf war with the players. It wasn’t about skill level and ability it was a competition for who liked who, who knew who, and what favors needed to be cashed in. The US wanted to get away from Hope Solo, there were some other players that were top players but either from the old school or drawing the wrong attention. Coaches want their players, and that means attitude and respect along with ability and drive. So from the top down the US soccer world is about being on the right team with the right coach doing the right things. If USSF is saying GDA gets you and extra check mark for NT, or if there are certain College coaches that are in the USSF barn too make sure your girl is in GDA. If your daughter has no interest in NT glory but wants $$ and to play D1 at a top school, make sure the Coach is not aligned with USSF and stay with the ECNL. US women’s soccer will be in the top 5 for a long time no matter what. On the men’s side the WC has been won by 5 different teams in the past 5 rounds, on the women’s side the US has won 3 out of the last 7 and placed in the other 4. Our little pitch won’t be a big impact on any of this so the only thing you have left are the bragging rights of saying my daughter got an offer to play for Dartmouth/ St. Johns/UMBC, and lying about the amount of the award.

Anonymous said...

Confusing, but I think i get the main thrust. The part I dont get is you make it sound like potential NT glory is an option for a meaningful percentage. I dont think it is. Also, why doe a country who has never won the U-17 WC, win the U-20 and then wins the Full WC multiple times? Its somewhat counter to logic. I think its attrition on the womens side. I think over time, the US is one of the few countries in which women can entertain playing beyond a certain age, largely becasue of T9. its not some great development plan we have, in fact quite the opposite. We outlast everyone else. You mention FIFA PoYs, but lets be real . Lloyd is not in the top 20 players in the world currently, no matter what FIFA says

Anonymous said...

I'm still trying to figure out why that poster specifically named programs (one of which is an ivy and not tied to athletic awards). What a diatribe!

Anonymous said...

Check please!

Anonymous said...

Simply said...without the essay.
"I don't want my daughter to play GDA, she will play ECNL"

Anonymous said...

Statements like this will keep the ECNL plenty strong

Anonymous said...

Ivy League DOES give athletic awards

They are just not termed as such

Applicant A vs Applicant B

Identical in everything except one plays soccer

Soccer player gets in

Any money given (usually based on income) towards tuition/R/B/fees is thus ATHLETIC, since this is how she got in.

Anonymous said...

I think the poster was demeaning those 3 schools (Dartmouth, St Johns and UMBC) in terms of soccer

Pretty sad.

Anonymous said...

333 just no. If the differentiating factor was not soccer, but a basket-weaving project the kid did..does that mean she got money for basket-weaving?

Anonymous said...

yes, of course

Anonymous said...

You do know the Ivies give out more aid than other school by a large %, right?

About 2/3 is the average

Anonymous said...

So...

I got into Dartmouth because of soccer

Dartmouth is giving me 40K per year

But I cant CREDIT having played soccer growing up at the level I did for allowing me to attend the Ivy institution and receive the monetary benefit (scholarship) to do so?

Be well in your little world.

Anonymous said...

3:33 - athletic aid is athletic aid and financial aid is financial aid.

Anonymous said...

And, getting into a school is different from an athletic or financial aid award. Is this the U15 blog?

Anonymous said...

Agreed. To be more specific, one gets reported to the NCAA and one does not. Not trying to diminish anyone's accomplishment at all. But, at least rant correctly.

Anonymous said...

"Since all Ivy League schools do not award athletic scholarships, there are no signing dates for the National Letter of Intent."

See: The Ivy League website - http://www.ivyleague.com/information/psa/index

Anonymous said...



FALSE!
Ivy League DO NOT give athletic awards.



Anonymous said...

"Ivy League schools provide financial aid to students, including athletes, only on the basis of financial need as determined by each institution's Financial Aid Office. There are no academic or athletic scholarships in the Ivy League."

This is policy, however not minimizing that academics and athletic achievements have no part in the decision process.

Anonymous said...

The correct statement is there are no direct athletic awards for the ivies. And based on application level and differentiators like soccer or another sport or activity like music/band will push an applicant into a smaller pool for the admissions board to review. Similar to all colleges. As for the financial awards from the ivies they will tell you it is need based and academic/merit scholarships. Using “basket weaving” as the de-facto comparison is a bit off the mark. The process is somewhat cart before the horse sometimes with athletes committing and then fulfilling their commitment. You are committing to play soccer once you are admitted. FAFSA determines what you can afford to pay above the federal grants and then you start looking at what awards are available. With very few full rides the average player will work with admissions to seek out grants and awards with some additional input from the coach or depending on the school the assistance of the Athletic Department.

Anonymous said...

http://www.ussoccerda.com/20170216-feat-miriam-hickey-director-of-us-soccer-girls-development-academy-qa

Anonymous said...

Official statement, not fabricated:

FINANCIAL AID CRITERIA
Ivy League schools provide financial aid to students, including athletes, only on the basis of financial need as determined by each institution’s Financial Aid Office. There are no academic or athletic scholarships in the Ivy League. A coach may assist a prospective student-athlete to obtain an estimated financial aid award, however only the Financial Aid Office has the authority to determine financial aid awards and to notify students officially of their actual or estimated awards.

Remember: A prospective student-athlete who receives an estimated need-based financial aid award is welcome to share it with other Ivy League schools. In some cases Ivy League financial aid offices may reevaluate and adjust an estimated financial aid award based on a written need-based award or estimate from another school. Ivy League coaches may not discourage a prospect from sharing an award, or from obtaining an estimated award from another Ivy institution.

Anonymous said...

How many kids that you know have the realistic ambition of playing for a Full or youth national team. Compare that with the number who want to play soccer in College. I think the USSF should stop overselling the NT angle and focus simply on what makes the GDA a better place for young soccer players. The rest takes care of itself.

Anonymous said...

7:55

Odd choice to me, although I only know what I read in her BIO. To me it sounds like a step up for her but not a re4al win for GDA. Not a high profile name, no real accomplishments with a high level program. I guess she might be a Dutch version of Sundhage?? No one in the US system was available for (or wanted) the job? Maybe this will be a boon to Midwest soccer players having an advocate in the system.

Anonymous said...

Some more about her. I agree though, definitely not a "flamboyant" choice.

http://www.miriamhickeysc.com/

Anonymous said...

amazing is it not, that GDA is struggling to fill positions.

Anonymous said...

What struggle are you referencing? There is plenty of interest out there. One of the items holding back some interested candidates is the ECNL rule that any current ECNL participant that is playing for a Club that is not the GDA must wait until after May 1st. So, the current club members and other non-ECNL players are currently attending the various try-outs.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that poster was referencing GDA id sessions and turn outs. I think he/she meant openings in US Soccer associated with the GDA.

Anonymous said...

yes, I read it as in reference to USSDA positions for girls side, such as Miriam Hickey

Anonymous said...

yes. I am referring to the leadership positions. Already whiffed on their first choice for technical director. like most things, the GDA can only be as good as the people involved. Caveat emptor.

Anonymous said...

et est recta electione pro vobis

Anonymous said...

Give her a chance. I think she will do a great job. The biggest test will be the technical advisors chosen.

Anonymous said...

I'll play. electio est finis
Four years of classical languages - still paying off.

Anonymous said...

Thought it should have been someone with some US history as a player coming up through the system. I wonder if they reached out to Mia Hamm, or her contemporaries?? A real coup would have been a D1 coach who could take a successful model of grooming top talent into a winning squad. Going from Mid-Western Club Technical Manager to National Technical Manager is a big leap. I guess she is a good evaluator of coaches/leaders and advisors. It will be a figure head role where she will need to put regional leaders in place and set a standard for curriculum and player evaluation.

Anonymous said...

tbh, its hard to see what is attractive about the position to the sort of person you mention. You are stepping straight into a fight. You are working for some people who have exhibited stunning arrogance. If you are really good, this is a step down. You are hoping for the perfect storm of a really talented person with a track record of success who wants to give back and if that is the case, why not take Heinrichs job ?

Anonymous said...

I think there was intent to go outside the usual US soccer alumnae. She has international experience. This is where the speed bump occurs in YNT development. And, also may be why current NT players are heading abroad, too. She will bring all of this to the GDA development curriculum. It's an exciting time.

Anonymous said...

Agreed. Read in her interview that she wants GDA to be what soccer should be, the player's game with little to no coaching from the sidelines. Let the girls work it out on the field. Let them problem solve. Some coaches should do that now. Do it in practice; not in the game. That is how you develop players.

Anonymous said...

@255 ..I am a broken record on this, but if a coach does not do that now, why do your hunk he will change? Because the USSF says so? Good coaches were good pre GDA and will remain so post GDA , the same for bad ones. So unless you manage to get a huge percentage of the good coaches into the GDA, then what is going to change the environment and the experience?

Any Academy or Club is a function of its people no matter what league or association they are affiliated with.

The logic that by calling something GDA makes it better for developing players is false. The only thing that may be better ( or worse) is the College exposure and that we cannot judge yet.

Anonymous said...

4:09 - who says I am speaking about a team in the GDA? I happen to like that philosophy. It's how soccer in the older groups is supposed to be.

Anonymous said...

409 ..you imply that its NOT like that. Why not? its is definitely like that at my kids Club IOt should be lie that in all age groups, not just older ones.

Anonymous said...

Younger groups still need a lot of direction (U14 and younger). They need on the field coaching during games. By the older groups, these girls have been playing long enough to have the soccer iq to work it out on the field. Or, they should have the soccer iq to do so.

Anonymous said...

947 thats the problem. Instruction on the field? On field coaching? thats how you get the sort of robots we have now. No imagination. You have "coached" it all out of them by 14. When we had the playgrounds, maybe the balance should have been different, but now we have allowed people to convince us that we need to pay for elite "instruction". most of the instruction is poor and creates the sort of conformity that has made US youth teams predictable, unable to solve problems and vulnerable to lesser "developed" nations.

teaching young kids to play the game is as much about letting them figure it out as it is for older ones.

Anonymous said...

Depends what coaching from the sidelines you're implying.
Tactical, set play set up etc...ok
Play by play talking/yelling and berating players by pointing out their every mistake...absolutely not

Anonymous said...

1007 Bergs the question how often young kids should be in an environemnet where Tactical, set play set up etc even matter.



Anonymous said...

10:41
Are you talking U6 or U12-14?
Red light green light?

Anonymous said...

I'm talking tactical, play set up as far as coaching from sidelines, but at this age (the age of this blog U16/U17+) that should not be necessary.
If a coach at this age is still setting up the pieces on the field during play, then he/she hasn't done a good job as far as development.

Yeah, the coaches that call out kids are kinda crappy; in particular since college coaches may be watching. You bring a kid to the bench and talk to them about it. All of them make mistakes, including the coaches.

Anonymous said...

meant to add
....as far as training and development. These are things that need to be worked out in practice. And for goodness sake, make sure you have the right kids on the field, too. The players don't pick the line ups.

Anonymous said...

I think someone had referenced younger age groups not needing tactical play...
Game time is not usually a "good teaching moment" at his age. Training is the time for this
Part of GDA training will include film analysis etc...

Anonymous said...

I think they said that the younger ones needed the on the field coaching, including tactical.

Anonymous said...

Was referring to this:

"1007 Bergs the question how often young kids should be in an environemnet where Tactical, set play set up etc even matter.

February 21, 2017 at 10:41 AM"

Anonymous said...

before we talk tactics etc, we need to equip our kids with the fundamentals. There are girls playing at the ECNL level who cannot strike a ball consistently. My kid has played for YNTs without being a consistent ball striker. This is not the foundation you lay an Academy on.

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Anonymous said...

The system is failing our youth for the opposite reason inner city schools are failing. Too much money, too many people and no real consistency. Parents (to a certain extent me included) want the short term bragging rights, Coaches want the notoriety, clubs want the prestige, and players just want to play. I also see specialization across multiple sports. Take basketball for instance. No longer does a player need to be able to dribble, pass and shoot (for the most part). You have a shooting guard, point guard, power forward, etc. Same with soccer, although there is more ability for players to have a few tools. And players are pigeon holed at younger and younger ages, sometimes not even related to their ability on the field. I actually think playing HS soccer helps with development because the HS coach does not see them as the same player that the club coach sees and may play them in a different role using different skills. I also have seen players go on to College and move to a new position because the college coach actually sees the potential and can actually coach a player instead of plug and play. With the new head of the girls DA and the current confusion in club soccer (the age change was in fact a bad thing for a lot of the players) I do not see any true development priorities. USSF saw that the ECNL was stealing their thunder and needed to jump back to the front of the line. Glad my daughter is cycling out next year. On to college.

Anonymous said...

948 I agree. When you read the comments on blogs its clear that the factors you raise at the start are spot on. When you read responses, you can read the differing slants of each poster. Bottom line is that we ARE failing out youth. they are just caught up in the wash. There are a few coaches out there who are doing a great job, but they get sidelined by less capable people with a political agenda.

When you think about it April Heinrichs role is symptomatic of part of the issue. I read this ion another site and its pretty accurate

the ECNL is far more PR savvy than the USSF and is killing them on that front. The ECNL has events to promote, best XIs to publish, drafted players to celebrate . The ECNL is adding Clubs whilst the GDA is losing them The USSF have nothing to promote other than relatively boring staff additions. April Heonrichs is in England with a U-18 team instead of beating the bushes to promote the GDA and help hire staff. I think what we are seeing is that the USSF are poorly organized, understaffed and distracted with other things. They are fighting vs a force that is organized, determined and has more experience in dealing with Clubs, because they are made up of Clubs.

The USSF have overestimated the draw of - hey you can make a YNT - and underestimated the ECNL. When the USSF continue to pick the same players over and over it does beg the question what difference the GDA will make for the majority of kids.

i cant tell you who has the better product but I can tell you that the ECNL is much slicker at marketing its strengths and the USSF needs to wake up before its too late. April Heinrichs needs to decide IF she is a YNT Coach or a teh Technical Director. Once the GDA was announced the TD job is full time. You cant be wandering off to coach Strikers camps or YNT tours. Especially when you dont have a staff in place. The failure to recognize this and the arrogance of - if we put USSF on it they will come - is a risk that the USSF did no need to take.

The lack of details emerging form the USSF is a major failure by them and it only increases the window for the ECNL to destabilize them.

The USSF product may well be the better choice in time for a certain type of player, but if they were smart they would realize that given the small percentages of "that type of player" they need to make it appealing to ALL good players. They have not done so yet.

Whether you agree or not as to what will be better, the GDA roll out is a shambles. Meanwhile AH seems to be taking abackm seat to the Boys DA guy in terms of being the face of what is supposed to be the pinnacle of the USSF WOMENS dev effort. Is she being sidelined because manner has upset Clubs? If so, then how can she be the TD. If not, they why is she not here in the USA hiring people and making the rounds to help Clubs sell the produict ?

I like you 948 am glad my kid is almost done with this.

Anonymous said...

Having a younger daughter going for GDA, I don't like the last 2 posts but they are dead on and correct.
The marketing itself for ecnl is second to none.

Anonymous said...

Good post, 9:48

Best of luck.

Anonymous said...

Agreed. Good posts.
Isn't that the problem with soccer nation, lack of proper marketing? With soccer as the #1 sport in the world, the MLS and NWSL should be marketed everywhere and those brands should be recognizable. But, they aren't. Shame.

Anonymous said...

1128 I dont think it is. The US is a very crowded sports mkt. Soccer is not a priority. I dont care how much marketing you do, that is not changing relative to other sports any time soon. However, Soccer occupies a very popular money making niche for girls. As such the marketing is cleverly targeted by the ECNL at middle class families who are looking at the sport as more of a College vehicle than something to take their family to watch. Its is a unique circumstance, but profitable nonetheless.

The ECNL will defend that profitability to the hilt. Look at the recent E|CNl TX event. day 3 rained out, but a flood of social media content poured out by the ECNL. the Content has ZERO to do with the game. Its silly photos , memes etc, BUT it is very powerful with that girl demographic. The ECNL is selling a lifestyle for young women, the USSF is just selling soccer.

Soccer on its own has not succeed in the US yet. Its why up till thisyear the min salary was 7k in the NWSL. Its not a career UNLESS you happen to make the USWNT and as such making that team is NOT purely about ability. It insanely political becasue the financial benefits from making it vs not is to many the difference between playing and not playing.

Put that in the context of a GDA and you realise that the USSF are fighting an uphill battle once kids realize that making a YNT is a huge long shot AND btw, not making one pre 18 does NOT mean that you cannot make the FULL team down the line.

A vote today for the GDA is a leap of faith that those in charge have all the tools TO MAKE YOU A BETTER SOCCER PLAYER and the desire and sacrifice to do that is worth potentially missing out on other great experiences. I cant tell you how many girls will make that trade, but from my viewpoint, it is by no means clear that the USSF have ANYONE in authority now who has shown us since 2011 (When Heinrichs became Technical Director) that they know what they are doing when it comes to guiding our Youth

Anonymous said...

Its marketing on different levels. The ECNL has tapped into a niche within soccer. They are basically “Standing on the shoulders” of the players. Yes they offer a venue to showcase talent, at a price, they promote the hell out of everything, equipment tents at every event, Social Media plans, and it is run like a start-up fueled by caffeinated interns. The comment by 12:00pm about the Texas event losing a day to weather, I believe that last year or the year before an entire event was washed away by weather not sure if there was a refund, most likely a credit for the teams that were registered. The ECNL currently prints money for the program, and they do good things for the clubs they support. And for the most part the clubs follow the structure and offer a good product. I have even seen problem coaches moved out at the club we are at when they are not a good fit. I honestly think that the bureaucratic USSF took their jealousy and created something instead of partnering with ECNL. I would think if you took the teams that are in the champions division at the end of the ECNL season in June and put an all-star team together you would have a strong YNT funnel from u15 – U18. No need for a GDA except to give USSF another thing to do and another thing for some parents to brag about.

Anonymous said...

1223 I agree on some and totally disagree on a lot. Champions division has NOTHING to do with it. the best teams do not necessarily have the players with the most upside or even talent.

Good product? perhaps if you are not an elite player looking for the most challenging environment. It markets to the mean. Thats how you make the most $$ and have the biggest audience. Nothing wrong with it, but form a pure Soccer pov, good =/= excellent. The product is also very varied from Club to Club , even team to team within a Club.

There is a need for a GDA , just like there si for AP Classes, the difference is, we dont tend to put kids in AP Classes to make up the numbers for the real AP students. In fact the opposite. You have to keep up.

the GDA product should NEVER have been the same as the ECNL product, BUT as soon as you go national then size of the country means a lot of teams. and as soon as you do that you challenge the ECNL.

they could have co-existed IF the USSF were prepared to accept the non soccer part of the ECNL - all the hoopla and quite frankly over spending on unnecessary stuff WHEN SOCCER IS THE ONLY PRIORITY. But i guess they wern't

Anonymous said...

12:43 PM

Not apples to apples but what has the Boys DA done for the men's side? ANd wouldn't the GDA be pulling talent from the ECNL to start their journey to US soccer dominance (oh wait the US women's program has been top 3 usually #1 since the beginning of the Women's WC).

The GDA will continue down the path and parents players and coaches will flock to it if it is percived to be a better product or offer something that ECNL does not. But that would entail that YNT would no longer draw from the ECNL pool to remain pure to GDA. And whether that happens or not would be a shame.

Anonymous said...

at no point have the USSF said they will ONLY draw from the GDA. If you are happy with what we have, then no need for any change right? The fact that the dominance is underpinned by T9 and attrition(( other countries do not have infrastructure in place that allows women to keep playing soccer to the exclusion of other things) measn that the US will always be in the top 5 at worst. Why are the Youth teams doing so poorly?

Why are the Clubs and coaches NOT flocking now? Since announcement, the numbers have dropped and continue to. Why ?

I hear the apples to apples, but what is success to you wrt a boys DA? You cannot be suggesting that a US based boys DA should underpin the US at say a perennial top 10 country in the world? Mens socer is already a global game and talkent goes where the $$ are. it goes there form a young age. By definition almost ANY 16 yr old boy in the US playing DA has at worst ALREADY failed. At best, he is well behind the top kids in the world and has a lot of catching up to do.

Anonymous said...

12:00 - I hear ya re ECNL and pouring out pics re rained out day, but don't you think part of that is trying to salvage the event? I think ECNL is trying to do some triage to stop the bleeding.

Anonymous said...

The fact remains that ECNL's success was due in large part to USSF. Now that is gone. Everyone needs to decide what is best for his/her child and move on.

Anonymous said...

I've paid less for apparel at Disney World than at an ECNL event. How can a shirt that is promoted at an ECNL event cost additional to get the ECNL emblem? Greed.

Anonymous said...

201 no. I think its to continue to appeal to the kids.

205 ECNL success due to USSF ? How so ?

210 Got to pay for all that media/marketing some how.

Anonymous said...

I will see if I can find my paperwork. My older daughter played years ago when it was the GDA and everyone was trying to talk us out of it because it was never going to succeed. Chuckle.
Anyway, my recollection is ECNL was founded as an indentification program for US Soccer. The original founder worked with US Soccer and was hopeful that at some point it would be funded by it as well and costs would be very low.

Anonymous said...

Heinrichs said it (for those that didnt read the article)

ECNL is a business model

GDA will be a player development model

Tells me

a) US Soccer may have been a little unimpressed with the overall level of teaching

and maybe

b) US Soccer didnt like that ECNL had gotten so big in terms of how many were playing (watered down) - to remain profitable

Anonymous said...

To support the poster re relationship between ECNL and USSF, I found the below excerpts from an older TDS article 2015 -

"The ECNL is independent of U.S. Soccer as a league, but Noftsinger says the relationship the two organizations have forged over the years has led to a smooth transition between the two for players down the line. Indeed, as recently as nine months ago Ellis herself was at an ECNL event scouting players."
....
“In the six years the ECNL has been around, that relationship with the federation has become stronger and stronger, and it’s very collaborative,” Noftsinger said. “Because at the end of the day, we’re not the federation, but we are here to support them and help them be the best in the world.”

It will be interesting to see how it all plays out now that there has been a divorce of sorts.

Anonymous said...

249 is this the same Heinrichs who has been conspicuously absent from any GDA messaging since her disastrous initial attempts? The same one who has presided since 2011 over Technical development that has seen us slip in the quality and content of our Youth teams ? I would love to know hat track record she has of player development. I dont see it. I dont see her hiring good people OR developing players herself. Where is the evidence that she can develop players? or is she saying that a USSF stamp with EXACTLY THE SAME COACHES is the magic elixir ? Buzz words like player dev model are easy, but until SHE starts giving us details of what that is ......

Anonymous said...

this relates to the 2:54 post. Noftsinger referenced therein is the visionary that founded ECNL and left 11/2015 to join MLS. She should be lauded in history of us soccer.
I would be curious to find out her thoughts. Soccerwire are you on this?

Anonymous said...

She addressed the "slipping" in the article as well.

Directly asked - "does this mean that you will be assembling what you feel is the proper team moving forward - even if it trades off stronger results?" Answer - yes

In other words - selecting the players with upwards potential is key - and we see the mix of ages - whereby a team of ALL age group (and stronger physically_ players - but with lower ceilings - who might GET the result - may be passed over.

Hope this helps.

Anonymous said...

By the way - HICKEY has taken over GDA

Anonymous said...

Hickey, who has relatively no investment in this is now in charge whilst Heinrichs does what exactly ? The TD of the USSF should be standing by her side announcing the appointment. Instead.....there are 2 possibilities

1. Heinichs, Snow et al are going to be relieved of duties

2. This organiization has no idea how to run things.

I suppose it could be both,

Anonymous said...

"at no point have the USSF said they will ONLY draw from the GDA"

No they haven't and they never will say that. But we know they will draw from the GDA early on - you are not the top of the pyramid because you say you are. They will draw from GDA the young players with promise will move to GDA clubs because the parents see top of the pyramid and ussf. When they have the product, they will expand their search in areas with no GDA.

Anonymous said...

PS. They will add another 60 to 80 clubs in the years to come just like the BDA did.

Anonymous said...

like many of the "plans" in US soccer. they all focus on adding Clubs and territorial domination and yet we dont seem to produce players that are any better than they were 10 years ago. They can add 200 Clubs for all I care, my kids will be long gone by then.

Anonymous said...

Ok...ECNL is the bomb and is a money maker...check
GDA will suck and is a money maker...check
Make a decision for yourself and follow the path you choose...check

Done yet?

Anonymous said...

Just a thought:
GDA Spring 2017 – Clubs will build the initial teams internally with some external players looking for the upgrade. Most clubs that have an ECNL badge will promote their ECNL players to GDA or at least make them the offers. Parents will accept the best offers and the teams will be built. Training will most likely follow the current club model for ECNL with maybe a few tweaks to make it look different. Initial events may mirror the Boys DA for end of season 2018 http://www.ussoccerda.com/calendar . The mystery is what happens between tryouts and June 2018? There is also the “You just aren’t in the Loop until you sign” that a lot of clubs do. Clubs have their pre-tryout town hall where they lay out their plan for all levels of the club but once you sign you go behind the curtain and get the real story. For ECNL that is set, GDA will be a beta test year with possibly more regional events during the fall into winter hence the no High school rule.

Anonymous said...

What did you just say?
There are many unknowns, of course

Anonymous said...

8:01 - disagree.

ECNL was good, yet to be seen how this will impact it as some players don't want to be in what is now 2nd tier. So, will it be watered down, of course. And, yes, it is costly.
GDA will be at least as good as ECNL, highly likely better as it is now considered top tier so good players will gravitate to it. Will it be perfect, either? Probably not. As far as cost, it's less than what ECNL currently costs based on budget information received at a GDA meeting.
All other leagues, will see how it plays out. This is what will be interesting. How are these going to be affected?

Like every season, all of the success of the leagues are contingent on the players that participate. Good luck to all. And, everyone needs to find whatever league fits their needs as far as development, playing, rules and cost. We are looking down the home stretch. Not for us to sweat.



Anonymous said...

8:01
Call my post tongue in cheek, sarcastic or facetious...:)
I was merely saying "let's get passed all this and choose your own path"
GDA will be top tier but may not be for everyone.
My daughter's goal is GDA, but I will not trash others' decisions with assumptions and unknowns.
Each club is communicating/not communicating properly. This is leading to many throwing things around as facts.

Anonymous said...

911 is it possible that GDA is not top tier? You throw that out there like its a fact. If not playing HS and training an extra day makes a player better and that is the goal, then there was nothing stopping a kid doping that long before the GDA. If I look around the ECNL teams in the North east and assume all those players go to the GDA a very strong case could be made that IF one or 2 kids decided to stay and play HS/ ECNL, the ECNL team would beat teh GDA team. The whole notion of top tier is reliant on the best players playing GDA. What happens when a YNT player decides to play ECNL and HS. Are the USSF going to stop selecting her? I doubt it. I am not at all convinced that the GDA will have any impact on the majority of the players who choose to join it. The soccer junkie type kid who this is aimed at is already getting plenty of soccer and that type of commitment level is currently not required to get in to a great school the cost / benefit is not at all obvious.

Anonymous said...

Hearing Albertson (Fury, Bay Shore) is having their initial ID sessions Saturday

Anonymous said...

9:34

Where would a player train 4 days a week in the fall without GDA and without high school. The other clubs are off.

Anonymous said...

954 There are indoor facilities and soccer coaches offering coaching as often as you want.

Anonymous said...

Of course.

Individual training not the same.

Anonymous said...

So a league that has not even started yet is already given Tier 1 status. While the intent may be for GDA to be the best of the Best, current indications are that it will be an option. There is always talk of girls soccer being a suburban fueled upper middle class club. Maybe the GDA will follow some of the boy's DA teams and recruit from more diverse areas. If you look at some of the prep schools near Philly you can see how they have benefited their teams through some scholarship opportunities.

Anonymous said...

1023 who said it has to be individual? there are younger players not playing HS pros, College kids - all sorts of soccer players out there training. It is remarkably easy to find if you look. At some of the Clubs it is easy to practice with a younger team if you want to. You can just take a ball to your local park or back yard and be creative for 45 mins per day on your own.

Individual work is a necessity in becoming a better player. Go ask Messi how many hours he has spent alone with a soccer ball.Its a huge hole in US Youth sports that development has to be in a team environment with coaches around ( and usually $$ involved)

Fact is most kids wont do it becasue they dont care enough and the social side of practice is as important as the learning to thm. Im fine with that. Its a very small number that want that. I also do wonder what the tipping point is for Girls Soccer. i will bet that every DA Club does not practice 4 days per week I am almost sure it will eb closer to 3 days per week.

Anonymous said...

So my prediction:
I agree that those clubs with current ECNL will have very strong DA. I predict the top 2 2019 00 kids from current non DA ECNL teams will look to grab a DA spot if close enough and they will fill in with the top 15 current ECNL players to make up the bulk of the GDA teams at Stars, NEFC, WC, Fury, EM/NYSC, PF, FC VA, PDA.

I have heard that the only real waffling regarding DA participation among current ECNL players are the bottom third of the roster that are worried about the stringent sub rules and consequent diminished play time. However, the clubs are trying to address that issue by providing friendlies and several non DA events to get the bottom roster kids in.

Further, I predict that there will be some really weak DA teams at the 99/00 age group and even the following year at 00/01. They will provide additional game time for the bottom roster former ECNL teams. Oakwood, Cedar Stars, PA classics and VA Dev academy, and Empire will be weak at least until the younger players start filtering through and they are collecting the best in the area. Within 5 years they may be among the stronger of the GDA teams if they offer a quality product.

The outliers are the Spirit teams. Will the Bethesda kids go to the MD team? Will the best Richmond kids come up to VA? What about McLean- arguably one of the best 00 teams in country? I suspect there will be migration of the top players either looking to continue or start with the YNT programs and/or directed by their Power 5 college coaches.

I can't believe that Bethesda didn't partner with Spirit like PDA did with Sky Blue. Something must be up there. they passed on the boy's DA initial offering and suffered for it. they then grabbed Potomac's spot and it all subsequently worked out. Wonder what they are thinking?

Anonymous said...

1057 ..Are you sure that ALL ECNL Clubs are being allowed to keep both ?

Anonymous said...

Who said anything about both

Anonymous said...

I think the poster meant that the clubs that have ECNL now in 2016-2017 will have the kids who are currently playing ECNL move to the DA team regardless of whether they keep an ECNL team or the second team is labeled NPL. The teams that were allowed to keep both were the mega clubs that the ECNL knew would be able to field competitive B teams in the face of a DA A team and needed these power clubs to stay relevant at all. Some of their B teams are currently in the national league and now there B teams will be ECNL. national league even more irrelevant. The first few years a few mid level or lower ECNL players may choose ECNL over DA, but the best players won't accept playing on the lower level team.

Anonymous said...

My guess players 1-3 CFC 00 2019 move to PF GDA while lowest 3 2018 players PF ECNL move to CFC ECNL so they play more and can do senior year high school.

Anonymous said...

Every once in a while there is an arrogant poster that is speaking generally but really in the first person about their situation. A statement like "The best players won’t accept" is really a difficult one to make because it is subjective. The coaches at the clubs know who stands out, and yes to some extent a confident 16-17yo can have enough confidence to say “I am the best player on my team” but to say a player won’t accept being placed on an ECNL team where a DA team is available is ludicrous, unless the parent has influence the only option is to try out for another DA team and hope they make that. There may also be some USSF influence on placing scouted players on rosters. I have actually seen this at the ODP level where players are pre-selected before tryouts and are guaranteed spots. If that’s what you intend than you are correct, players identified by USSF will not accept being on the apparent lessor team. I still think the idea of GDA is redundant to the current hierarchy of girls soccer and will only serve the purpose of creating another place for people to park their Range Rovers and BMWs.

Anonymous said...

116 what happens if the best player in a Club decides to go ECNL/HS ?

Anonymous said...

126 I agree. A REAL accelerated program would have a lot fewer players and as such would upset the very folks you mentioned becasue Mia may not be in that group. Give the fact its NOT free, someone has to fund all the travel to make a National league work. I would not do a National league in the US. I think it creates an unnecessary barrier. I would make a regional league in the North East and spend that additional $$ on training .

Anonymous said...

1:26

Dont you think there will be players attending multiple DA sessions (with different clubs)? And then choosing - if accepted more than once?

Anonymous said...

1:20 PM

Will kids who do not make PF GDA go eleswhere or accept their rating and stay on as ECNL. Going from club to club when not invited may not always have the desired result of moving up in the line-up. And sometimes staying hurts your stock as well. It will be another round of tryout roulette like last year with the age change mandate. And the clubs are already using it as a fundraiser with "ID Camps"

Anonymous said...

If the GDA is implemented as USSF want, the top team will be the U18/19 team. from what i have seen, that will cover the best players from potentially as young as 15.So Im not sure why people think that a strong ECNL team = strong DA team? In theory all the teams BEST players who are capable of playing up will be told to do so. This is going to displace several older kids whose parents MAY think they are better than they are. Not just the bottom on the ECNL team but conceivably the middle of the roster as well.

Anonymous said...

1:48
PF will not keep ecnl
Not sure what player does if they don't make gda there

Anonymous said...

I assume CFC's ECNL teams will improve quite a bit with an influx of PF players. Players at the bottom of the ECNL roster and players who don't want or don't make DA will most likely head to Continental. There really aren't many other options in the area.

Anonymous said...

9:34 - hahahaha. Yeah, and what color was the unicorn in your dreams this time?
USSF has already dictated what will be considered the top of the pyramid. While there are a bunch of leagues, there is only one federation. And it has endorsed GDA. It will not be endorsing another.

Anonymous said...

@2:44 - some may go to PDA, Matchfit or Bucks, too. There are choices.

Anonymous said...

1:28 - kids and parents make various decisions for a variety of reasons.
Re your ODP comment, though. You do realize that some kids like for instance those on ODP regional team get a pass on the initial pool play try-outs? So, what you may think is a guaranteed spot is a bye they earned.
Also, sometimes the coaches specifically scouted a kid that they see has something. That's life. Things like this happen.

Anonymous said...

10:41 - so? Welcome to competition academically and athletically.

Anonymous said...

1:48 - the GDA id sessions we attended have been free.

Anonymous said...

516..Amazed that you think a league becomes the top tier because USSF says so. Time will tell

Anonymous said...

Interesting...that the best '01s - even '02s may actually play '99\'00 in the fall.....if what you say is true

Anonymous said...

at this age no kids jumping to DA,maybe the lower level kids who play less then 20 mins a game,but not the top players they are already set up....And the best team at this age is not ECNL....look to NPL

Anonymous said...

So you are saying no IGFA kids attended/will attend any DA sessions?

See what I did there...?


--

we shall see.

Anonymous said...

856..that is what the USSF want. The 99/00 team is supposed to be the best in the Club talent wise. If kids can hack it physically, they are supposed to play there We will see if it happens

Anonymous said...

I was scoffed at and accused of spinning something when I wrote-
There would be no merger between CFC and PF, and that PF would have to pick between ECNL or GDA and that ECNL was not going to give PF a choice of having both.

Now I am telling you there will be no players in the 2001 or 2000 age groups from FC Bucks or CFC that will go to PF for GDA. Won’t happen.

I am telling you now, that it’s a total longshot that any significant player from PA Strikers will go to PF for GDA.

I do think that PF will be in good shape with drawing younger players to GDA, and after a couple of years and will be in good shape with the GDA. PF won’t be alone, most smaller GDA programs will have a tough time gaining and keeping players 2001 and older at this point.

Anonymous said...


I am saying none of IGFA kids will attend and there is no need for them to attend.

Anonymous said...

11:56 - i think the prediction was that PF would pass on the GDA if having to choose. They didn't.

Anonymous said...

10:57
Please explain...99/00 is the last team possible before ending pre-college play
I can see heavy on the 00s but why draw in 01 and 02?

Anonymous said...

I am not the poster you are addressing, specifically, but I agree with that mindset. Kids move up rosters all the time in particular clubs. It helps in their development and challenge as well. Further, it helps in the id process, too. Lastly, it opens other slots for younger players as far as development on the younger squads.

Anonymous said...

Agree. Makes sense. When the kids are in college, you don't play based on birth year or date of graduation, you play based on ability. Either you can or you can't.

Anonymous said...

I don't disagree with the premise of ability and playing up.
However the GDA idea is to have the younger on the team as "developmental" players. Example...the 02s are added to 01 team etc...
If a club has the pool of players to justify players playing from 02 to 99, that's quite the jump isn't it?
My question to poster was that USSF wants the 99/00 team to be the main/starting focus...I don't understand the concept

Anonymous said...

I don't really see the 02 to 99 age group jump. That probably less likely at the onset. But, absolutely see it with some 01's.

Re your other question, I think because it's a trickle down mindset. The best will be at the top; like the full senior team as compared to a jr team; or the majors vs. the minors. The pinnacle will be moving to the top team even within the various clubs.

Anonymous said...

That is how the academy teams work overseas. Should be interesting.

Anonymous said...

May not want to bring in academy overseas into conversation...US doesn't operate same way, whether by choice or by ignorance.
Overseas, the better the player you are, the less you pay. In the US, the more money you have to spend, the better opportunity you have....
Speaking for our club, we just don't have the numbers to add 2-3 year younger players to 99/00 team, unless we have this crazy onslot of outside girls coming to tryouts

Anonymous said...

Coaches at any level need to be able to accept true development, and sometimes that means giving players the opportunity to play themseleves into or out of the starting line-up and valuable minutes. My daughter's U15 coach was pretty good at this. He also was transparent in setting the line-ups. After the final practice of the week he would send an email to the team with the planned formation for the weekend games along with starters and subs. He had a pretty good plan for minutes as well where everyone got minutes over the 2 games, even sending a new line-up sheet for the second game with changes if necessary. I think too many clubs and coaches are afraid to give players a chance to prove themselves or to disprove the coach. Sometimes the only way to get the best next look is to move on. Maybe having the opportunity to do so two years in a row (last years age change tryout roulette, and this years GDA tryouts) will afford some of the overlooked players the opportunity to thrive in a new environments, and that does not necessarily mean a jump to GDA.

Anonymous said...

846 Then you should not have GDA status. GDA/ECNL ..its all being watered down anyways.

813 I see freshman making an impact in HS soccer all the time. On teams with older ECNL players. The standard of soccer is just not that high so as to prevent an 02 from being one of the 18 "best" players in any Club.


It is a very different question as to whether Club politics and $$ will stop Clubs from following the mandate. Issues like this are exactly why some of the ECNL clubs do not want GDA. It forces them to consider issues that they really dont want to.

Anonymous said...

8:46 - Re the poster and the trickle down method, maybe that gives more insight into the recent pick re GDA who has a lot of international experience.

Anonymous said...

9:53 - I just don't see it yet with many 02's; not right away. They need one more year of playing at high speed and maturing. Some may get hurt. It's not going to be high school. The speed and physicality of the game as you get older may cause injuries.

Anonymous said...

1017 you have to remember one thing that maybe you are not factoring in. Being part of the GDA ia more about the practices than the games. A talented player irrespective of age may well benefit more form being around the Clubs best players than less talented kids her own age.

Injuries are part of the game.

Anonymous said...

I would expect younger players to be considered developmental only, not part of game roster. You are correct, training is the big push.

Anonymous said...

1121 I dont think your dev theory will work. I think players have to be attached to a roster, so the way dev works a developmental player is non GDA player attached to GDA for a certain number of game rosters.I dont think it can be indefinite. In fact after a certain number I think the player has to become full

I dont think a rostereed GDA U15 kid can also be on the GDA U18/19 roster. Ca onyly work if the kid is say ECNL


Maybe Im wrong.

Anonymous said...

Just going by GDA page comment on roster:

"As a combined age group, players are encouraged to play up and clubs will have groups of players that they will move up and move freely among age groups within their Academy program. The projected pool would equate to approximately 23 players per age group for a total of 69 full-time players amongst the three age groups (U-14/15, U-16/17, and U-18/19)."

Anonymous said...

thats outdated because we have 4 age groups now U-14 and U-15 are separate. I also dont see how that will work in practice.

On another note, its great to see French and Snow rewarded for the excellent jobs they did with the youth teams. Why anyone would trust an organization like this to develop youth players is beyond me


http://www.socceramerica.com/article/72440/us-soccer-shakeup-u-17-and-u-20-womens-coaches.html

Anonymous said...

Completely crazy 249. Ellis has to keep her yes men close no matter their failures. They either don't know or don't care that the soccer community is outraged by the performance- not the results- of our YNT this year. Fail-fail-promotion! Brilliant. My only hope is the new coaches have some real vision for these ages and that if Ellis is ever fired the cabal will be gone with her. The problem is that they can create the illusion of their own success. By elevating younger YNT players to older age groups and yes even the full team, they can point to the mission of the ynt and say see, we succeeded in indentifying and developing players for the highest level: job well done...

Anonymous said...

I am not convinced beat players from ECNL will make the change to DA ,as there is no real benefit for these girls . If your club ,like ours has a deep coaching bench,there will be little if any drop off in training.In our club there are many on the ecnl team that do not really want to go to DA. They would like the opportunity to finish senior year in hs soccer . This is important to many of our girls . Fyg ,our club has a very good ecnl ream , the best in their age group. So I think much of the conversation on this blog is misguided. I am not sure to this age group DA has much importance to the girls .

Anonymous said...

Informal survey and please don't bash the posters for their comments:
1. Is your current junior daughter trying out for DA?
2. If not, what team will she play with after school ball season is over?
Rumor is some clubs will allow hs play but some will not....

Anonymous said...

1. My daughter is on the fence.
2. The tough part is where does she play if not DA?
Other choices are kinda ugly, so to speak. Her future college coach recommends the highest level...

Anonymous said...

10:04,

Without divulging too much, how has the college coach (verbal commit at this point I would think)suggested this? I am assuming D1, and does the college coach have any pull with the Club to get your daughter on DA.

My daughter (Junior) will stay with her current team (College coach likes loyalty and is familiar with the current coach and program).

Anonymous said...

College coach actually didn't make it black and white...wish he had. He recommends highest level but also understands the senior year dilemna. No arrogance intended but she would no doubt be on the DA team if she wants to. No need for "pull" from college. She's on the "first" team now, but more and more of her teammates are indicating school ball as their choice...

Anonymous said...

1013 So much about your post that is unsettling. Maybe unintended or Im reading too much into it. Apologies if I am

1. D1. Not sure why thats the assumption
2. College coach and pull ? Surely its about just selecting the best players irrespective of age on U18/19 team
3. How is going DA or Staying got anything to do with loyalty?

Again, apologies if I am misrepresenting

Anonymous said...

2/24 - 10:49 - just circling back to you re your comment re more training than games re GDA. I have seen more injuries in practices than games with kids competing for playing time. Older kids don't tone it down.

Anonymous said...

2/26 @11:36 - you are mistaken. Most of the high level kids I know are going GDA. But, your kid needs to be in whatever league works for her and you.

Anonymous said...

11:15 I thought so too...but I'm finding that this differs much from club to club, very subjective
My daughter is on top team now and half the girls not going GDA...when they could easily mind you
Speaking for current juniors, don't under-estimate the senior year HS ball factor.

Anonymous said...

1126 is your kid currently in one of the ECNL clubs going to DA? Are they one of the ones that is allowed to keep ECNL? Looks like the 2019s on my kids ECNL team are going to play DA if selected.

Anonymous said...

That's why I'm talking about current juniors, 2018s. I see the 2019s doing as you say.
Thought ecnl was making all cubs choose one or the other?
No my daughter is not currently ecnl

Anonymous said...

@11:26 - I am not underestimating the hs ball thing, but the girls in our club which is a top team/club are not doing it. And, some of these girls are all- americans currently. They are making a choice and it's not hs soccer. But they have other aspirations and I don't mean just NT. At some point the GDA tag will be needed to be a coach, play internationally, etc. They are giving themselves options. But, you have to do whatever works for you.

Anonymous said...

And, I'm not saying all the kids are moving to GDA. But definitely the top ones.

Anonymous said...

1:34 are you still referring to 2019s?
Everyone makes their own choice....
I keep repeating this, especially to those who like trashing other players' choices

Anonymous said...

Refering to 2018's (not including those that are graduating early to play spring ball obviously), 2019's and 2020's. Not trashing anyone's choice, but just noting that some of the intel on the board not fully accurate.

Anonymous said...

You are comfortable with your choice, 2:21. So stop blogging about it.

I frankly dont know what we are doing - but would be honored for her to be asked to play DA

Consequences both ways - and not just for the player/student.

I marvel at all these players.

Anonymous said...

Looks like WC found a viable partner for GDA with announcement of partnership with NYCFC. Leaves the 2 LI clubs to struggle for themselves. Fury will be a joke as the only have the PR name as leverage. EMSC will need to drop GDA or ECNL to survive.

Anonymous said...

332 I think you are reading it the wrong way around. NYCFC PICKED the partner that they felt fit them best. Its a massive coup for WCFC.

Will have the best facilities in the NE by far once NYCFC complete build. Access to one of the richest sporting groups in the world.

Could be a game changer for them down the line.

Anonymous said...

I think its terrific and we don't live close enough to benefit.

Anonymous said...

Smart people will see them as the logical player to consolidate the very best female youth players for as big an area as practically possibly under one umbrella. They have the money, the facilities and the access to coaches that no other club in the area bar maybe NYRB has .

IF they do it right they should be the top dog in the next 5 years. I hope they do. The kids deserve excellence.

Anonymous said...

For anyone thinking that US Soccer was not going to support, specifically promote and endorse the GDA, just saw post on friend's social media where her daughter's club and it's future GDA players were given exclusive access to the US WNT training session for the She Believe's tourney.

Anonymous said...

1:45 AM

Saw the same thing from a friends post as well. But I believe it was open to the entire club on the girls side. By saying "Future GDA" you are limiting the scope of inclusion. There are other relationships that exist between the club and staff so it also may have just been a fortunate opportunity with no relation to GDA.

Anonymous said...

1:45am

If there was a true GDA tie-in wouldn't both PA teams be included in the session.

Anonymous said...

Or PF used their marketing machine and TM to get what they want.
That's why their club is what it is!

Anonymous said...

Players this age still acting like fawning young girls (over USWNT). A little sad. They should be in school.

Anonymous said...

10:04 AM

Sounds like sour grapes. I think at any level it is great to have someone to look up to who has gone down the path you hope to go down. Let these girls enjoy a bit of star gazing, as well as seeing training at a high level.

Anonymous said...

7:50 - They are promoting the GDA. Kids received USA/DA rally towels. USSF is definitely promoting the GDA. There is a booth at the She Believe's tourneys promoting the GDA. This isn't to say only the GDA kids were invited from that club, but it was only a GDA club invited.

Anonymous said...

10:04 - I don't think they missed school. It was after school hours it seems (as it's dark). I think it's great to see the type of training USSF requires from its players as this will be their life in a few months.

Good luck today Team USA. These games should be great. Eng vs. France and USA vs. Germany.

Anonymous said...

I agree. They are definitely promoting the GDA. And, they should be. I think it's great.

https://www.ussoccer.com/schedule-tickets/20170307-shebelieves-cup-washington-dc-match-guide
The Match Guide for the DC Match 3/7

"U.S. Soccer Girls' Development Academy
Find out where current WNT players got their start to become the best in the world! Stop by the U.S. Soccer Girls’ Development Academy setup, to learn more about the program designed to accelerate the development of world-class female players and see yourself as a Women's National Team Player with our photo opportunity."

Anonymous said...

i think it is totally the wrong approach.

Anonymous said...

I disagree. It's not for my kid, but I am happy to see the Federation back the very program it put into motion. The second guessing can stop.

Anonymous said...

2:52 agreed
Honest and precise.
May not be for everyone but much needed

Anonymous said...

10:04 Rather have my daughter "fawning" over USWNT than knucklehead boys at HS. Is sitting down as adults to watch pro sports on TV or at a stadium any better? Sadder to see a parent skip their kids Sunday soccer match so they can watch the NFL teams on TV. Now that's fawning.

Anonymous said...

is the R o W producing players thru parent funded quasi Academies that are elite in name only? Are they advertising for players at International Soccer games? NO . You realize that tickets to these games are often pricey so the very audience you hit are the same middle class wannabees.

they are in the trenches looking for talent, evaluating it and PAYING for it to develop. Allowing non stakeholders to select the talent is mistake number one, Entrusting people who have done nothing but fail to then evaluate it is another.

At every level we whittle down the pool on the basis of things that have NOTHING to do with talent or potential.

btw, the wrong approach refers to how you select talent in the first place. As long as you surround talent with mediocrity it looks better right? Go ask our U20 and U17 W Cup teams. At least those kids are still rolling along in the system like nothing happened

when are people going to wake up to the fact that this is not Elite in any real sense of the word?

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