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U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

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U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by trev06 on Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:24 pm

The U.S. Soccer Federation will launch a girls’ equivalent of the Development Academy, the nationwide youth league of top clubs intended to groom future professional and national-team players.

Multiple sources have confirmed to SoccerWire.com that U.S. Soccer is preparing to launch this new initiative in the fall of 2017. An official announcement could come as early as next month, when most of the U.S. soccer world gathers in Baltimore for the NSCAA Convention.

Read the article:
http://www.soccerwire.com/news/clubs/sources-u-s-soccer-set-to-launch-girls-development-academy-in-2017-relegating-ecnl-to-second-tier/

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by bird04 on Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:41 am

A sop to non-ECNL clubs that has potential to really upset the apple cart....who knows how it will play out. I think it is a ploy to keep a lot of people playing after the true age debacle decimates (X3!) the rec and C,D,and E level teams at the competitive level...i.e...Keep hope alive and the dollars coming in! That being said, if it is done correctly, it DOES have the potential of displacing ECNL...the only question is how quickly this occurs (again, if done "right")...Interesting times!

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by trev06 on Fri Jan 08, 2016 3:03 pm

Yeah, who knows. My take is that they see the money being made with ECNL that perhaps they did not believe was possible or sustainable and now they want to grab their share.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by ENERGYFC04 on Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:22 pm

My question for the TSC parents does this worry you guys at all on the ECNL exclusivity within the State of Oklahoma. My understanding is that you guys signed something like a 10 year contract that forbids any other club in the state being accepted into ECNL. This has kept OFC from being accepted et al. Also, this has helped pull some players from the west side. Will this lessen the grip within the state of Oklahoma?

Also, my understanding is that the US Developmental Academy requires a national champion from that club. I may be mistaken, but I don't believe any club in Oklahoma has a national championship.

It is interesting times for Oklahoma!

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by bird04 on Tue Jan 12, 2016 11:21 pm

OFC Hampton 200, OFC Girls 2001, TSC ECNL 98 or 99 or possibly 2002 could possibly fill that bill at any time in the next year! Very Happy

And, to answer the question about this lessening the TSC grip, .....yes.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by bird04 on Tue Jan 12, 2016 11:22 pm

OFC Hampton 2000, not 200...the 200's are REALLY old!

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by ENERGYFC04 on Wed Jan 13, 2016 3:41 pm

Bird there are some good teams in the state but winning a national title is a rare thing to do even for great teams. So does US Youth change requirements? It will be interesting.

I do believe it changes the landscape tremendously over the next two years. My prediction is in the fall of 2017 we will see the following:

Not sure if development academies will occur or not. However, I expect to see TSC's grip lessened. OFC will try to step in a more active role. I see SLSC and Norman combining and the Blitz looking to combine with a club in that area.

Basically, I see the changes creating two large clubs (east and west) who will basically control the state. Just my guess, no inside information but seems the way its heading.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by bird04 on Wed Jan 13, 2016 8:56 pm

Sounds about right. I was not predicting that any of the teams I mentioned would do it, just that those mentioned are good enough to have the potential to do it. It is soccer, after all, and on any given day the bounces can go your way (or not!). I should've been more clear in how I put it....

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Tar Heel on Tue Feb 23, 2016 6:19 pm

Borrowed from Texas Soccer forum via Socal forum (posted today)...

The U.S. Soccer Federation made it official on Tuesday:

It will launch the Girls Development Academy (GDA) in fall of 2017 -- a nationwide league with 60 to 80 clubs fielding teams at the U-14/15, U-16/17 and U-18/19 age groups.

Having launched a boys DA in 2007, the USSF will thus be in control of the highest level of youth soccer for both genders.

Since 2009, the U.S. Club-sanctioned ECNL laid claim to running elite soccer for American girls. The ECNL has 79 clubs nationwide that field teams at five age groups, from U-14 to U-18.

One great achievement of the boys DA, thanks in large part to fully funded MLS academies, is that it vastly increased the number of elite boys players participating at no cost or reduced cost.

So will the GDA be less expensive for players than the ECNL?

“It’s our plan that the cost will be reduced to play in the league,” said U.S. Soccer Technical Director April Heinrichs. “In general, U.S. Soccer is going to pick up a lot of the expenses in terms of running the league, so the cost will be less for the players.”

Ryan Mooney, U.S. Soccer’s Director of Sport Development, said that in premier leagues such as the ECNL and the Development Academy that require vast amounts of travel, per-player costs can range significantly from one club to the next.

“We want to make sure that we’re mindful of the cost impact that is reaching the end-user, both the player and their parents,” said Mooney. “Whether that’s through the cost we cover from an event perspective, whether it’s a reduction in registration fees, whether it’s scholarship program funding, etc. Those are all things we’ll look to contribute to the program to try to help minimize costs.

“At the same time I think it’s fair to say that there will still be a pay-to-play component, certainly from the onset, and we’ll see how that changes over time. It was no different eight years ago with the launch of the boys Academy and how that cost now has changed between then and now.”

Heinrichs said that the Federation has been discussing a Girls Development Academy for years and that a recent influx of financial commitment makes the timing right.

“For me it was quite simple,” she said. “When we looked at all these new resources post-World Cup win [in 2015] that want to invest in, be a part of and integrate with our youth national team program on the girls side – this was an easy decision. An exciting decision for us as well.

“Five years ago, we had two full-time employees in the girls youth national team program. Now we’re looking to hire potentially 10 to 15 new people to be involved and committed on a full-time, daily basis to improve the women’s game. And then there’s going to be a large budget to run the [GDA] ... and the full Dribble of U.S. Soccer’s leadership and the ability to run a national league -- we’re already running the NWSL and the Boys Development Academy.”

A key difference between the GDA and the ECNL is that while the ECNL is age pure and requires clubs to field five teams, GDA teams will field three combined age group teams.

“The use of combined age groups will require clubs to form teams with a balanced roster of players from two distinct birth years,” reads the U.S. Soccer statement.

Heinrichs calls it a way “to get players playing up more naturally.”

“If I had a list of player development initiatives that help players grow, one of the top, top, top things on that list is playing up,” she said.

In the age-pure setup, clubs may resist moving players up because it decreases their changes of winning trophies. In the DA setup, for example, a team’s star player one year will be among the younger players every two years. Fewer teams can also mean fewer roster-fillers -- players who might not be suited for the elite level but are needed to round out the squad.

Moreover, by having to field only three teams, Heinrichs believes the GDA will be more inclusive to smaller clubs.

“Let’s say there’s a super club out there and they’ve got 60 girls teams under their umbrella,” she said. “It’s quite easy for them to put a team out there in every age group. But with a smaller club that’s doing it well -- and this is where I think our model is pretty attractive -- all they have to do is put out three really good age groups.

“I have seen non-ECNL doing things really, really well but they’re not a super club. They don’t have a business model that’s so huge that they’re all about making money. But they’re doing it well from the leadership standpoint. They don’t have so many teams, but their focus would be on getting the three age groups right.

“Having birth-year every other year with the Girls Development Academy makes it more elite and more inclusive of clubs that aren’t a super club.”

The other big difference compared to the ECNL or U.S. Youth Soccer leagues is that the GDA will ban players from participating in high school ball. That, Heinrichs said, will only affect “1 percent” of the players in girls youth soccer. And she expects players with college and national team ambitions to be OK with skipping high school ball.

That it doesn't ban kids from high school ball will no doubt be a selling point from the ECNL when it starts competing for players with the GDA, which begins taking applications this May for the fall 2017 launch.

The applications will be evaluated by U.S. Soccer technical staff on:

• Leadership of the club and quality of the coaching staff;
• Desire to embrace and promote the core values of the program;
• U.S. Soccer license levels of coaching staff;
• Infrastructure of the club and the resources currently being invested in development (facilities, scholarships, staff to player ratio, etc.);
• History of player production for youth national teams, the senior women’s national teams, and professional leagues;
• Market and depth of the player pool, geographic location and travel implications, and proximity to other elite clubs.
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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Number6 on Wed Feb 24, 2016 4:08 am

Is tsc tied to ecnl by contract, or can they try for GDA in May?

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by TSCSOCCERDAD on Thu Feb 25, 2016 11:39 am

If that is true, then all of the top clubs in the US will be unavailable for the GDA.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by TSCSOCCERDAD on Thu Feb 25, 2016 11:49 am

ENERGYFC04 wrote:Bird there are some good teams in the state but winning a national title is a rare thing to do even for great teams. So does US Youth change requirements?   It will be interesting.

I do believe it changes the landscape tremendously over the next two years.   My prediction is in the fall of 2017 we will see the following:

Not sure if development academies will occur or not.   However, I expect to see TSC's grip lessened.  OFC will try to step in a more active role. I see SLSC and Norman combining and the Blitz looking to combine with a club in that area.  

Basically, I see the changes creating two large clubs (east and west) who will basically control the state.   Just my guess, no inside information but seems the way its heading.
TSC's grip on what? Two big clubs currently control the OK soccer landscape now. My prediction is that TSC don't get into the GDA. That means the ECNL will have to look to other clubs to fill the void with the top clubs leaving and then what's the point of the ECNL? If you look at the national teams make up throughout all ages they basically come from only a few clubs. The U18 womens team that is going to Spain have 6 players from Surf. I think the fact that the TSC boys side haven't been able to get into the DA is a telling sign.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Number6 on Thu Feb 25, 2016 4:21 pm

So does anybody from Oklahoma deserve to get in? Does any club here produce high ranking players, or are they better off just adding more clubs in areas with higher population?

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Number6 on Thu Feb 25, 2016 4:22 pm

So does anybody from Oklahoma deserve to get in? Does any club here produce high ranking players, or are they better off just adding more clubs in areas with higher population?

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by nat on Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:10 pm

The TSC ECNL 99's had two girls out of 40 for the whole country invited to the U18 US national team tryout and one girl made the U18 national team. So they are producing some players.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Bigbadwolf on Thu Feb 25, 2016 11:49 pm

I really only see OFC and TSC as the two clubs that have a chance of landing a DA team.

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by 918soccer on Thu Mar 17, 2016 12:47 am

Question: is OFC or TSC more likely to get DA? Why?

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by 05GKdad_Tulsa on Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:48 am

Boys ECNL

Maybe an interesting option to keep clubs from going DA.
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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

Post by Bigbadwolf on Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:29 pm

The word out of Texas is that clubs granted DA will be able to have one DA team and 1 ECNL. Boys ECNL maybe a foot in the door for TSC to get a DA team..... Interesting

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Re: U.S. Soccer set to launch girls’ Development Academy in 2017, likely relegating ECNL to second tier

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