U.S. Under-16 Boys' National Team
A STEPPING STONE
The United States Under-16 Boys’ National Team serves as a developmental and identification squad for potential future National Team players. Based on recent results at the U-17, U-20, U-23 and full Men’s National Team levels, the Under-16 program is an important cog in that process as numerous players have risen through the U.S. YNT ranks to succeed at the next level.
The players for this pool fluctuate every year in conjunction with the Under-15 and Under-17 programs. The U-16 Boys’ National Team is closely tied to the U-15 and U-17 teams in order to streamline player development and develop a core group of players that make up the age group.
PUTTING PLAYERS IN THE BEST POSITION
The Under-16 Boys’ National Team program is also used to identify potential talent and prepare players for future involvement in international soccer. The players are introduced to a culture and style of play consistent throughout all of the U.S. National Teams. The U-16 BNT also addresses the importance of character development such as attitude, discipline, and commitment. A majority of the players in U.S. Soccer’s Under-17 Residency Program in Bradenton, Fla., have come through younger stages of U.S. Youth National Team development, including the U-16s.
“We have increased our focus to identify and evaluate talented players at the younger age groups at U.S. Soccer Training Centers” said U.S. Soccer Head of Scouting Tony Lepore. “It’s an important role because the players are being introduced to the National Team program, being involved in our training centers helps us to evaluate them in a good environment, to get to know them better and helps them prepare them for a Youth National Team camp. It is all part of the process as the players move up the ladder with the Under-17, 18 and 20 National Teams.”