Crossfire Oregon's Nico Lopez Selected for id2 Tour

Lorenzo 'Nico' Lopez from Crossfire Oregon has been selected for US Club Soccer's id2 National Selection roster. The squad will travel to Argentina for 11 days to play against top youth academy sides whose teams are stocked with players on the path to La Albiceleste. The id2 program are no strangers to youth national team success either, with the most recent U-16 US Soccer BNT featuring 8 alums of the program. This is the program's first foray into South America, with a roster selected around optimal player creativity and technical ability in the hopes of matching well with the 1v1 flair of the Argentinians. The cost of the program is free, thanks in large part to the generous support of Nike. 

We wish Nico all the best on his journey! 

 

id2 National Selection roster for Argentina announced
International tour held in South America with strong support of Nike

2015 id2 National Selection International Tour Web page | usclubsoccer.org/id2

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Jan. 27, 2015The id2 National Selection team roster for the 2015 id2 National Selection International Tour to Argentina, Feb. 28-March 10has been revealed. Eighteen elite boys - 16 born in 2001 and two born in 2002 - from nine states throughout the country comprise the squad.

Number:
Name:
Position:
Hometown:
Club:
Birth Year:
10
Julian Anderson
M
Ocean, N.J. PDA
2002
9
Luis Arriaga
F
Santa Rosa, Calif. Santa Rosa United
2001
12
Ed Berumen
D / M
Salida, Calif. Modesto Ajax United
2001
7
Eduardo Blancas
F
Napa, Calif. Napa Valley FC
2001
15
Judson Burns
D
Argyle, Texas Andromeda FC
2001
4
Dominic De Almeida
M / D
Lincoln Park, N.J. PDA
2001
14
Jesus Esparza
M
Newark, Calif. Palo Alto SC
2001
18
Angel Flores
F
Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad United FC
2001
6
Abraham Gonzalez
M
Riverside, Calif. FC Golden State
2001
11
Azriel Gonzalez
F
Las Vegas, Nev. Heat FC
2001
16
Luke Hansen
D
Littleton, Colo. Colorado Rush SC
2001
17
Bryang Kayo
M
Montgomery Village, Md. Bethesda SC
2002
8
Lorenzo Lopez
M
Oregon City, Ore. Crossfire Oregon SC
2001
1
Cole McNally
GK
Mt. Airy, Md. Baltimore Celtic SC
2001
3
Togo Nakamura
D
Torrance, Calif. LA Galaxy
2001
5
Leonardo Sepulveda
D
Corona, Calif. Empire SC
2001
0
Noah Thomas
GK
Lakewood, Wash. Washington Premier FC
2001
2
Donovan Wu
D / M
Medford, N.J. FC Continental
2001
 

Players were selected based on extensive scouting and participation in the id2 Program's cycle targeting boys born in 2001, which included 12 Player Development Program (PDP) events and four id2 Training Camps held in 2014

Consistent with US Club Soccer's philosophy that identification and development should be free to players, the organization is funding the trip in conjunction with the strong support of Nike; there is no cost to players. The id2 Program is an Olympic Development Program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Soccer Federation.

Gerry McKeown, id2 Boys Program Director and head coach of the id2 National Selection, said he selected the roster based on technical ability, creativity and personality. "We intend to go to Argentina to attack and allow our creative players to have freedom. We must stay true to the core values of the program and allow players room for expression," McKeown said. "Our roster has good representation from all parts of the country. These players should feel fortunate for the opportunity that US Club Soccer and Nike have provided and remember that we left a lot of capable and talented players at home."

All five previous id2 international tours have been held in Europe, and McKeown was a strong advocate for dipping below the equator. "It's an unknown," he said about on-the-field expectations in Argentina. "We've never been to South America, so I'm not sure what we're going to face in terms of emphases from the opposing clubs."

id2 National Selection will play a competitive slate of games against top Argentinian youth academy teams. The match schedule is currently being finalized and will be made available online soon.

"We're going to be challenged in a way that's very different from how we play in the U.S.," McKeown added. "The players we face will have more technical flamboyance, especially in 1v1 situations." 

In addition to competing against elite South American teams, the id2 National Selection will be immersed in a multi-faceted experience on- and-off-the-field that also includes watching professional games and training in some of the country's best facilities. 

The group will arrive in Houston on Feb. 28 for a brief domestic base camp before flying to Argentina the evening of March 1. The id2 National Selection squad returns to American soil on March 11.

Over the past five years, id2 National Selection teams traveled to Germany and the Netherlands in 2010, England and Scotland in 2011, Spain in 2012 and 2013 and Italy in 2014. Opponents have included FC BarcelonaReal MadridJuventusInter MilanAtletico MadridManchester City FCEverton FCCeltic FCAFC AjaxBorussia Dortmund and PSV Eindhoven.

U.S. Soccer Technical Advisor Juan Carlos Michia will accompany the group on the tour in order to scout players for potential inclusion in youth national team programming. US Club Soccer Board of Directors member and former longtime Duke University men's soccer coach John Rennie will serve as Head of Delegation.

Numerous id2 National Selection alumni have been called into U.S. Soccer's National Team programs.

As has been the case in past international trips, video journals will be made available from Argentina. Video journals from past trips are available here: 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010.

 

 

ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER:

A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer is an organization committed to the development and support of soccer clubs in the United States.

US Club Soccer offers youth and adult registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms at the recreational and competitive levels, as well as a variety of other programming, including the Olympic Development Program-sanctioned id2 Program and Player Development Programs.

Through US Club Soccer, all of a club's programs - recreational, competitive and adult - are able to be united under one organizational umbrella, creating a "members for life" culture within each club. US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike.

 

 

Crossfire Oregon's Nico Lopez Selected for id2 Tour

Lorenzo 'Nico' Lopez from Crossfire Oregon has been selected for US Club Soccer's id2 National Selection roster. The squad will travel to Argentina for 11 days to play against top youth academy sides whose teams are stocked with players on the path to La Albiceleste. The id2 program are no strangers to youth national team success either, with the most recent U-16 US Soccer BNT featuring 8 alums of the program. This is the program's first foray into South America, with a roster selected around optimal player creativity and technical ability in the hopes of matching well with the 1v1 flair of the Argentinians. The cost of the program is free, thanks in large part to the generous support of Nike. 

We wish Nico all the best on his journey! 

 

id2 National Selection roster for Argentina announced
International tour held in South America with strong support of Nike

2015 id2 National Selection International Tour Web page | usclubsoccer.org/id2

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Jan. 27, 2015The id2 National Selection team roster for the 2015 id2 National Selection International Tour to Argentina, Feb. 28-March 10has been revealed. Eighteen elite boys - 16 born in 2001 and two born in 2002 - from nine states throughout the country comprise the squad.

Number:
Name:
Position:
Hometown:
Club:
Birth Year:
10
Julian Anderson
M
Ocean, N.J. PDA
2002
9
Luis Arriaga
F
Santa Rosa, Calif. Santa Rosa United
2001
12
Ed Berumen
D / M
Salida, Calif. Modesto Ajax United
2001
7
Eduardo Blancas
F
Napa, Calif. Napa Valley FC
2001
15
Judson Burns
D
Argyle, Texas Andromeda FC
2001
4
Dominic De Almeida
M / D
Lincoln Park, N.J. PDA
2001
14
Jesus Esparza
M
Newark, Calif. Palo Alto SC
2001
18
Angel Flores
F
Carlsbad, Calif. Carlsbad United FC
2001
6
Abraham Gonzalez
M
Riverside, Calif. FC Golden State
2001
11
Azriel Gonzalez
F
Las Vegas, Nev. Heat FC
2001
16
Luke Hansen
D
Littleton, Colo. Colorado Rush SC
2001
17
Bryang Kayo
M
Montgomery Village, Md. Bethesda SC
2002
8
Lorenzo Lopez
M
Oregon City, Ore. Crossfire Oregon SC
2001
1
Cole McNally
GK
Mt. Airy, Md. Baltimore Celtic SC
2001
3
Togo Nakamura
D
Torrance, Calif. LA Galaxy
2001
5
Leonardo Sepulveda
D
Corona, Calif. Empire SC
2001
0
Noah Thomas
GK
Lakewood, Wash. Washington Premier FC
2001
2
Donovan Wu
D / M
Medford, N.J. FC Continental
2001
 

Players were selected based on extensive scouting and participation in the id2 Program's cycle targeting boys born in 2001, which included 12 Player Development Program (PDP) events and four id2 Training Camps held in 2014

Consistent with US Club Soccer's philosophy that identification and development should be free to players, the organization is funding the trip in conjunction with the strong support of Nike; there is no cost to players. The id2 Program is an Olympic Development Program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Soccer Federation.

Gerry McKeown, id2 Boys Program Director and head coach of the id2 National Selection, said he selected the roster based on technical ability, creativity and personality. "We intend to go to Argentina to attack and allow our creative players to have freedom. We must stay true to the core values of the program and allow players room for expression," McKeown said. "Our roster has good representation from all parts of the country. These players should feel fortunate for the opportunity that US Club Soccer and Nike have provided and remember that we left a lot of capable and talented players at home."

All five previous id2 international tours have been held in Europe, and McKeown was a strong advocate for dipping below the equator. "It's an unknown," he said about on-the-field expectations in Argentina. "We've never been to South America, so I'm not sure what we're going to face in terms of emphases from the opposing clubs."

id2 National Selection will play a competitive slate of games against top Argentinian youth academy teams. The match schedule is currently being finalized and will be made available online soon.

"We're going to be challenged in a way that's very different from how we play in the U.S.," McKeown added. "The players we face will have more technical flamboyance, especially in 1v1 situations." 

In addition to competing against elite South American teams, the id2 National Selection will be immersed in a multi-faceted experience on- and-off-the-field that also includes watching professional games and training in some of the country's best facilities. 

The group will arrive in Houston on Feb. 28 for a brief domestic base camp before flying to Argentina the evening of March 1. The id2 National Selection squad returns to American soil on March 11.

Over the past five years, id2 National Selection teams traveled to Germany and the Netherlands in 2010, England and Scotland in 2011, Spain in 2012 and 2013 and Italy in 2014. Opponents have included FC BarcelonaReal MadridJuventusInter MilanAtletico MadridManchester City FCEverton FCCeltic FCAFC AjaxBorussia Dortmund and PSV Eindhoven.

U.S. Soccer Technical Advisor Juan Carlos Michia will accompany the group on the tour in order to scout players for potential inclusion in youth national team programming. US Club Soccer Board of Directors member and former longtime Duke University men's soccer coach John Rennie will serve as Head of Delegation.

Numerous id2 National Selection alumni have been called into U.S. Soccer's National Team programs.

As has been the case in past international trips, video journals will be made available from Argentina. Video journals from past trips are available here: 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010.

 

 

ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER:

A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer is an organization committed to the development and support of soccer clubs in the United States.

US Club Soccer offers youth and adult registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms at the recreational and competitive levels, as well as a variety of other programming, including the Olympic Development Program-sanctioned id2 Program and Player Development Programs.

Through US Club Soccer, all of a club's programs - recreational, competitive and adult - are able to be united under one organizational umbrella, creating a "members for life" culture within each club. US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike.

 

 

US Club Soccer welcomes prominent U.S. Soccer, MLS exec Kevin Payne as CEO

US Club Soccer is proud to announce Kevin Payne as its new CEO, effective immediately. Payne, whose career includes 25 years of high-profile, executive leadership positions within U.S. Soccer and Major League Soccer, adds invaluable expertise and experience to the US Club Soccer front office.

Bill Sage remains as US Club Soccer’s Executive Director.

Payne recently joined the organization as a senior consultant, increasing his familiarity with the nationwide landscape and enhancing US Club Soccer’s commitment to developing clubs and players.

“This is an exciting new chapter for me, and I’m intent on taking US Club Soccer to unprecedented heights,” Payne said. “We’ll continue to find new ways to grow and better our sport in every aspect, including player and club development, coaching education and administration.”

Payne’s resume is well documented among the top levels of the sport. Payne was hired as the National Administrator of U.S. Soccer in 1989 and soon after became its first Deputy Executive Director and Director of Marketing. Two years later, he was named Executive Vice President and eventually President of Soccer USA Partners, the marketing and game promotions partner of U.S. Soccer.

In 1994, he assembled the first ownership group for D.C. United and was a founding member of the MLS Board of Governors. When the MLS began in 1996, Payne also served as the President and General Manager of D.C. United.

The iconic franchise went on to appear in the first four MLS Cup championships, winning three times, in addition to capturing U.S. Open Cup (1996), CONCACAF Champions Cup (1998) and the InterAmerican Cup (1998) titles – the first major international trophies for any American club.

As Managing Director of Soccer for Anschutz Entertainment Group (AEG), Payne helped reorganize MLS in 2000 and became responsible for six of the 10 teams in the professional league.

Three years later, he returned to D.C. United and resumed his President and General Manager tenures. D.C. United subsequently won the MLS Cup the following year. The team went on to claim the 2006 and 2007 Supporters Shield for leading the league in points; and in 2008 and 2009, D.C. United made back-to-back Open Cup finals appearances, winning in 2008.

Payne served as a Board Member of the U.S. Soccer Federation from 1999-2014 and maintains his positions as Board Member and Vice Chairman of the U.S. Soccer Foundation, which he’s held since 1999. He also served on the MLS Board of Governors and the MLS Competition Committee from its inception until Sept. 2013.

He chaired the U.S. Soccer Technical Committee from 2007-13 and remains on the Technical Working Group. From 2009-12, Payne served on the FIFA Global Committee for Club Football.

“Adding Kevin to an already experienced staff is an important step for this organization,” US Club Soccer Chairman Phil Wright said. “He will provide additional leadership and direction in reaching our full potential.”

Payne now becomes CEO of US Club Soccer, which has experienced exponential, nationwide growth since its inception 13 years ago. This includes the implementation of key programming elements, such as the National Premier Leagues (NPL) platform, id² Program, National Cup series, DOC Diploma courses and more.

Please direct media inquiries to:
Tyler Heffernan, Communications Manager | theffernan@usclubsoccer.org

ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER:

A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer is an organization committed to the development and support of soccer clubs in the United States.

US Club Soccer offers youth and adult registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms at the recreational and competitive levels, as well as a variety of other programming, including the Olympic Development Program-sanctioned id2 Program and Player Development Programs.

Through US Club Soccer, all of a club’s programs – recreational, competitive and adult – are able to be united under one organizational umbrella, creating a “members for life” culture within each club. US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike.

usclubsoccer.org | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Instagram

NPL Partners with Surf Cup

US Club Soccer is proud to announce a new partnership with the Surf Cup in San Diego, Calif., and the Jefferson Cup in Richmond, Va., to provide top NPL teams slots at both events in 2015. These prestigious national tournaments will complement the existing US Club Soccer NPL Showcase events to launch the NPL Showcase Series.

The NPL Showcase Series provides NPL players with opportunities to participate in premier national showcase events while competing against top teams from across the country.

Slots in each of the four NPL Showcase Series events will be awarded to top NPL member teams. More details will be made available soon about applications, acceptance and team allocations for all events.

The 2015 NPL Showcase (Boys) in Las Vegas, hosted by Heat FC, will return next year after a successful debut in March.

The 2014-15 NPL Showcase Series:

  • NPL Showcase (Girls): Dec. 31, 2014 - Jan. 2, 2015 in Palm Coast, Fla. | Open to U-15 through U-17 girls
  • Jefferson Cup (Boys): March 6-8, 2015 in Richmond, Va. | Open to U-16 through U-18 boys
  • NPL Showcase (Boys): Early March 2015 in Las Vegas, Nev. | Open to U-16 through U-18 boys
  • Surf Cup (Boys, Girls): Summer 2015 in San Diego, Calif. | Open to U-16 through U-18 boys and girls

“We want our NPL clubs and players to have the opportunity to compete against top teams in the best environments possible, and having berths at the San Diego Surf Cup and the Jefferson Cup help achieve that goal,” said Bill Sage, US Club Soccer’s Executive Director. “The NPL Showcase Series was designed with high-school age players in mind, to help provide more opportunities to be seen by college coaches at high quality tournaments.”

Created in 1981 and entering its 35th year, the Surf Cup has grown to become one of the top college showcases in the country. More than 400 college coaches and scouts have attended each year since its inception.

“We are pleased to have the US Club Soccer NPL teams participate in the San Diego Surf Cup,” said Surf Cup Director Mike Connerley. “These teams will be treated to the Surf Cup experience – an event, not just a tournament. All of the NPL teams will play at a very high quality soccer venue, while showcasing their team in front of the top colleges and universities in the United States.”

The Jefferson Cup, which enters its 35th edition in 2015, boasts an impressive array of field complexes, including 24 turf fields for difficult weather conditions, in and around Richmond, Va. While the tournament annually accepts more than 700 teams from throughout the country, its status as a premier showcase event has caused officials to turn down about 500 teams per year in the past four years.

“This new relationship with US Club Soccer, the NPL and the Surf Cup only increases the value and experience of the Jefferson Cup Tournament Series,” Chris Friant, Jefferson Cup Director, said. “The Jefferson Cup and the Surf Cup are both outstanding events, and now NPL teams and players will have the opportunity to showcase their talents on both coasts on the best fields, in the best environments and in front of hundreds of college coaches.”

US Club Soccer’s 2014-15 NPL Showcase (Girls) will be held Dec. 31-Jan. 2 at Indian Trails Sports Complex in Palm Coast, Fla. Top-performing teams from the previous NPL season are given priority in the application process. Sept. 30 is the deadline to submit applications. A number of elite teams have already committed to compete.

 

ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER:

A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer is an organization committed to the development and support of soccer clubs in the United States.

US Club Soccer offers youth and adult registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms at the recreational and competitive levels, as well as a variety of other programming, including the Olympic Development Program-sanctioned id² Program and Player Development Programs.

Through US Club Soccer, all of a club’s programs – recreational, competitive and adult – are able to be united under one organizational umbrella, creating a “members for life” culture within each club. US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike and Army National Guard.

USClubSoccer.org | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Instagram

OPL Kicks off 5th Year!

The Oregon Premier League kicks off our fifth year of league play this season, and while 5 years may not seem like a long time, in the youth sports world, it's an important milestone to cross for long-term viability. 

Our fifth year kicks off among a flurry of changes, chiefly the move to small-sided at the U11 age group. Moving from a 11 a-side format to 9 a-side put the OPL on par with long-term player development practices around the world. Initially passed at the 2014 AGM as a move to 8 a-side, which is similar to European youth leagues, the league agreed to shift to 9 a-side over the summer to make the transition as easy as possible for teams who were playing in regional tournaments that were 9v9. 

"This is a move that's been in the making for several years," said Tualatin Hills United SC Director of Coaching Tom Atencio. "We have been looking for the right time to move forward with this, and the time is now. We want to give our players every opportunity to turn technique into skill; the players are at an age where they are at a peak in their development, and this gives them a chance to see the attacking and defending principles in more clear situations in smaller numbers, so they can practice and execute under pressure. Playing on the bigger fields does not lend to teaching effective and composed decision making - the games turns in to 'boot ball.'" 

One of the other primary reasons for the delay in moving to small-sided is the budgetary impact the move has on our participating clubs. Smaller fields are needed, as well as smaller goals to keep the game on par with what is age appropriate. This means renting other fields, if necessary, and buying smaller goals and nets.  The OPL has been talking with clubs about a potential move to small-sided for a few years, with the hope of giving clubs advanced notice to begin working these new costs into their yearly budgets. Additionally, the OPL has worked hard over the last several years to keep our league fees low so that clubs might be able to save money on their registration fees to begin to budget for these new costs to their programs. 

Another big change for the U11s is the introduction of a rule that prohibits punts and drop-kicks from the goalkeeper. With the study of the effect of concussions on brains still new to science, doctors and specialists are only now developing tools to assess the full scope of brain injuries in quantitative and qualitative ways. While the OPL is cautious about labeling this new rule a "heading issue," the larger issue we are hoping to address is the prevention of head trauma.

"The OPL is not aiming to remove heading from the game entirely," OPL Director of Operations Angela Harrison comments. "Players do need to learn how to head the ball properly, at a developmentally appropriate level. What we are doing is removing the instances of a ball dropping 30-40 feet out of the air and straight on to a player's head, who can't use proper technique to support themselves, nor may their muscular and skeletal frame be developmentally able to handle it." 

Many studies have shown concussions from heading are typically whiplash injury, with the side and rear of the brain most affected by repeated heading. The change in the rule will hopefully reduce instances where players are asked to head the ball time and time again during one game, putting them at a high risk for TBI/concussions with what's referred to as "2nd impact syndrome." This is when a person suffers a second serious blow to their head before symptoms of a first blow have subsided - which can occur minutes, days, and even weeks after the initial concussion.  Often times at this age, the more common cause of concussion/TBI in soccer players is several small instances in a short period of time that is seriously damaging for young players, rather than one big blow causing a concussion, which does happen from time to time

Lastly, another significant change is the removal of the NPL designation from the U11 and U12 divisions, instead using the "Premier" designation for the top division. The NPL (www.nationalpremierleagues.com) does not carry U11/12 divisions, so there is no need to enforce the same restrictions on those divisions, especially as it relates to participation in the OPL Director's Cup. In 2012 and 2013, the OPL began restricting participation in the Director's Cup tournaments to teams in the First Divisions and lower to ensure an enjoyable, competitive opportunity for those teams. However, fully aware of the value many teams place on this tournament as a fun, end-of-season opportunity for teams to look at their progress, the OPL re-opened the tournament to the premier level teams, and will have gold and silver divisions again for the first time since 2011. 

The progress has, at times, been slow, but the OPL continues our aim to serve our member clubs in a positive capacity, enabling each club to guide their growth and development according to their own beliefs and values. The league has seen our member clubs grow in size as well as make positive strides and player and team development, and will continue to support these clubs in their missions of providing invaluable opportunities within their communities for youth players to grow as players and individuals. Here's to another five years! 





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