Across the Academy - Nov. 11, 2010
WHATâ€™S AHEAD THIS WEEK
Bridging the Gap: The 18-player roster has been announced for the Menâ€™s National Teamâ€™s friendly in South Africa next week and includes the first two Development Academy alumni to get the call up to the full team. Juan Agudelo, who hailed from the New York Red Bulls AcademyÂ and Gale Agbossoumonde, who played for IMG Academy in program's first year, will travel with head coach Bob Bradley and the MNT to play South Africa in Cape Town on Wednesday, Nov. 17. That game will be televised live on ESPN2 and GalavisionÂ at 2 p.m. ET. Fans can also follow that match on ussoccer.com's MatchTracker.
Mass Entrance: Academy action is heating up this week across the country as teams from Denver to Philadelphia to Minneapolis to Kansas City begin their 2010-11 campaigns. Minnesota Thunder and Shattuck-St. Maryâ€™s Academy play their first ever Academy games against the Chicago Fire and Chicago Magic. In all, 64 games will be played on Nov. 13-14, by far the most of the young Academy season.
Central Conference Clashes: Two powerhouse teams will meet this weekend when the Dallas Texans, top of the Texas Division in the U-17/18 age group and second in the younger age group, travel to Michigan to take on the Derby County Wolves. Though Derby County will be making its season debut this weekend, the club has been to Finals Week in each of the past two seasons and captured the U-15/16 crown in 2009.
MLS Rivalry Renewed: Two Academy teams will continue their clubâ€™s Major League Soccer rivalry this weekend when D.C. United plays host to the New York Red Bulls in what will be the second game for both clubs this season. Both clubs have paved the way for Academy players signing professional contracts and making an immediate impact on the first team, and they will be looking to continue that pace as their seasons kick off.
LAST WEEKâ€™S HIGHLIGHTS:
â€¢ The 2010 Development Academy Winter Showcase and Nike International Friendlies will be held from Dec. 1-7 at the Reach 11 Sports Complex in Phoenix, Ariz. All 78 Academy clubs will be on hand for three games of non-Conference play alongside the Under-17 Menâ€™s National Teams from the U.S., Brazil, Korea Republic and Turkey. Fox Soccer Channel will televise all three of the U.S. U-17 MNT games, starting with the match against Korea Republic on Dec. 1, Brazil on Dec. 3 and Turkey on Dec. 5.
â€¢ The U.S. U-20 Menâ€™s National Team roster is nearly set for the upcoming Torneo de las Americas in Kennesaw, Ga., with 18 of the 20 players finalized. Real Salt Lake AZâ€™s Eduardo Fernandez is the lone youth player on the roster, and the first player from the newest member of the Development Academy program to make a U-20 roster. There will also be a Coaching Symposium in conjunction with the event.
â€¢ Nov. 6-7 represented a light weekend with only 24 games played. Seattle Sounders, Cal Odyssey, San Jose Earthquakes and Crossfire Premier were the only teams in action on both Saturday and Sunday.
â€¢ Seattle Sounders FC U-15/16 was the only team to pick up two wins on the weekend, giving them five victories in six games so far on the season.
â€¢ Concorde Fire U-15/16s continued their winning ways with a 7-1 victory against Birmingham United on Sunday. Concorde is averaging nearly four goals per game through its first 14 games on the year.
â€¢ South Carolina United U-15/16 picked up a win against Atlanta Fire to stay in second place in the Southeast Division.
â€¢ Texas Rush AJ Auxerre took a huge win against Dallas Texans on Sunday afternoon to stay atop of the U-15/16 Texas Division. Texas Rush are now 5-3-1 in the Division while second place Dallas Texans are 4-1-3.
â€¢ Thomas Hawsâ€™ two goals helped Lonestar SC U-17/18 to a 3-2 win against Solar Chelsea SC, helping them to keep pace with the Division-leading Dallas Texans.
WEEK NINE PEAK PERFORMERS
U-15/16 Performer of the Week â€“ Holden Fender, Concorde Fire
Fender, a former member of the U.S. U-17 MNT Residency Program, has make his presence felt upon his return to the Concorde Fire. Patrolling the midfield for the 13-0-1 squad, Fender netted one of his teamâ€™s seven goals against Birmingham United on Sunday. It was his first goal of the season.
U-17/18 Performer of the Week â€“ Jesus Guzman, San Jose Earthquakes
The San Jose Earthquakes goalkeeper had a big weekend, picking up two shutouts in scoreless draws against Seattle Sounders FC and Crossfire Premier. Guzman has started all six games so far this season for the Earthquakes, who are in their first season in the Academy, and holds a 1-2-3 overall record, good for third in the Northwest Division in the early going.
Referee of the Week â€“ Baboucarr Jallow
Jallow, a Grade 5 referee, was in the middle for two Academy games this weekend in the Seattle area and received high marks for both. Jallow is a veteran Development Academy referee who was part of the crew of assistant referees during Finals Week in 2010 and will be attending the upcoming Winter Showcase in Phoenix, Ariz.
ACADEMY ALUMNI NEWS AND NOTES
Luna Makes Playoff Debut: 2008-09 Development Academy U-15/16 Player of the Year Ruben Luna made his MLS Playoff debut Saturday night, coming on in the 77th minute against Real Salt Lake for Jeff Cunningham. Luna forced RSL goalkeeper Nick Rimando into a diving save on a breakaway in the 90th minute. Luna's appearance in the key second leg was his fourth of the season, and helped FC Dallas preserve the series lead between the two teams and advance to the Western Conference final. It was the first time the 18 year old made the 18-man traveling roster for a game this year.
U.S. Team Full of Academy Alumni: The U.S. U-20 roster for the upcoming Torneo de las Americas in Kennesaw, Ga., features nine players who were part of various Development Academy teams â€“ that is half of the 18-man roster. In addition to Eduardo Fernandez (Real Salt Lake AZ), defenders Gale Agbossoumonde (IMG Academy), Bryan de la Fuente (Chivas USA) and Korey Veeder (Clearwater Chargers), midfielders Moises Orozco (Real So Cal), Conor Shanosky (D.C. United) and Cesar Zamora (Chivas USA), and forwards Juan Agudelo (New York Red Bulls) and Tristan Bowen (LA Galaxy) are all former Academy players. With the exception of Fernandez, who is still part of the Real Salt Lake team, all are now professional players.
ACADEMY IN THE NEWS:
â€¢ Scholarships for the 2010-11 season have been awarded to 178 participants. Funding for the scholarship program is provided by Nike, the U.S. Soccer Foundation and the U.S. Soccer Federation â€“ ussoccer.com
â€¢ Technical Advisors Louis Mateus, Chris Brewer and Rene Miramontes were among the 26 coaches who participated in the FIFA FUTURO III coaching course that finished last week. Mateus talked to ussoccer.com about the experience â€“ ussoccer.com
â€¢ D.C. United takes a look ahead to the opening of their 2010-11 season with a preview on the clubâ€™s website. The Black and Red open against PDA and Red Bulls on the weekend of Nov. 13-14. -Â dcunited.com
â€¢ The Seattle Times picks up Sean Okoliâ€™s Performer of the Week nod from last week as part of their Sounders FC coverage. - SeattleTimes.com
â€¢ Cosmos Academy East shows support of the 2010 Global Peace Games for Children and Youth, as Director Giovanni Savarese highlighted the attendees at the New York event. - BleacherReport.com
â€¢ ESPN Dallas/Fort Worth and CBS 11 provide an update on a move that might help grow the FC Dallas Academy program. ESPN Dallas / Fort Worth and CBS 11 News
â€¢ Former Dallas Texan Conor Doyle came on as a sub in Derby Countyâ€™s 2-0 victory against Portsmouth on the weekend. It was his seventh appearance for the English Championship club. SI.com
â€¢ The Houston Dynamo wrap up their matches against Andromeda from last weekend â€“ HoustonDynamo.com
â€¢ The Fairbault Daily News looks ahead at Shattuck-St. Maryâ€™s first season as part of the Development Academy â€“ Fairbault.com