Eight Teams in Under-17/18 Age Group will Compete to Play Live on ESPNU in 2011 Finals Week Championship Match
- 2011 Under-17/18 Championship Game to Be Broadcast Live on ESPNU at 12 p.m. CT on Friday, July 15Â
- CASL Chelsea FC Academy Heads to Finals Week for Fourth Consecutive YearÂ
- Pateadores Qualify for Under-17/18 Finals Week for the First TimeÂ
- U-17/18s Kick Off Finals Week Play on Saturday, July 9
FRISCO, Texas (June 27, 2011) â€“ Baltimore Bays Chelsea, CASL Chelsea FC Academy, Dallas Texans, FC Dallas, New York Red Bulls, Pateadores, Players Development Academy and Weston FC qualified on June 27 for the 2011 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Finals Week by winning their respective group at the 2010-11 Development Academy Playoffs.
Finals Week runs July 9-16 at three venues in Milwaukee, where the teams will be split into two groups. The group winners face off in the Championship match Friday, July 15, live on ESPNU at 12 p.m. CT. Pateadores, New York Red Bulls, Players Development Academy and Dallas Texans will square off in Group 1, while Group 2 will be composed of FC Dallas, Baltimore Bays Chelsea, CASL Chelsea FC Academy and Weston FC.
Group 1 was won by Pateadores, who were the runaway winners after earning a full nine points from three wins during the course of the extended weekend. Pateadores made an improbable run to qualify for Playoffs, and subsequently earned a berth at Finals Week.
New York Red Bulls and Real Salt Lake AZ faced off with everything on the line as both teams had six points from two previous victories. New York came out on top with a convincing 3-0 win to seal its berth in Finals Week.
Players Development Academy was the only team to advance with a loss in their third game of the weekend, having won its first two Group 3 games. PDA returns to Finals Week after qualifying in 2009 but missing out last year.
Two Dallas teams qualified in front of their hometown fans, as Dallas Texans and FC Dallas are both heading for Wisconsin. The Dallas Texans return to Finals Week after missing out in 2010, advancing with seven points out of Group 4. FC DallasÂ returns toÂ Finals Week for theÂ second consecutiveÂ time at the U-17/18 level, taking Group 5 with seven points and beating out Cosmos Academy West who finished in second place with five points.
CASL Chelsea FC Academy qualified for the Under-17/18 Finals Week for the fourth consecutive year. The team headed into its third and final game of Playoffs with four points, two behind opponents Albertson SC. The North Carolina club came out 2-0 winners.
Baltimore Bays Chelsea finished at the top of Group 6 with a 2-0 win against Seattle Sounders FC. Both Baltimore and Seattle won their first two games on the weekend, and battled for the lead on the last day of play.
Weston FC and Chivas USA were both positioned to take Group 7, each on four points. St. Louis Scott Gallagher Metro attempted to crash the party by defeating Chivas USA in the third group match to give them their second victory, but Weston posted a 2-0 win against Derby County Wolves and took the three points that secured a first-place finish.
The Development Academy playoff system was created to add to the number of meaningful games for Academy athletes, further enhancing the player development process. Since its launch in the fall of 2007, the Academy has improved the training environment, provided relevant, high-level matches on a consistent basis, increased the level and efficiency of scouting for the national teams and provided players, coaches and referees with structured programming.