D.C. United today announced that Sonny Silooy has been named Director of Youth Development. Silooy will be tasked with overseeing all D.C. United Academy initiatives, including youth teams and youth training opportunities, as well as ensuring players within the system reach their utmost potential. Under Silooy’s guidance, United’s Academy system now boasts eight competitive and training teams that serve top flight players from throughout the mid-Atlantic region.
“Sonny comes from arguably the best youth development system in the world in Ajax, and we are thrilled that he will now focus his attention full time in helping to elevate our Academy program to the next level. I fully expect that Sonny will establish a curriculum and training program that will bring the best out of our youth players and coaches,” said D.C. United General Manager Dave Kasper.
Sonny Silooy has been a part of D.C. United since 2011, assisting with with scouting and video analysis for the First Team as well as working with all of United's teams in the area of player development including the Reserve team, U-23 team and Academy teams. Silooy began his career playing as a defender for Amsterdam-based Ajax of the Dutch Eredivisie over the course of two campaigns from 1980-1987 and 1989-1996. He appeared in over 250 league games for the squad and won seven domestic Dutch championships, in addition to winning the European Cup Winners Cup in 1987, the UEFA Cup in 1992 and the UEFA Super Cup in 1995. Silooy also garnered 25 caps during his time with the Dutch National Team through his career.
“I am happy that I can now focus more on the academy teams,” said Director of Youth Development Sonny Silooy. “We have a philosphy, which is highly regarded by Major League Soccer and U.S. Soccer, along with structure and organization to make D.C. United’s Academy system the best on the East Coast and one of the best in the nation. Winning for us is a second priority, developing players to higher levels and preparing them for First Team action is the most important thing.”
Following his playing career, Silooy coached youth players from 2000 through 2003 before returning to Ajax’s famed and widely regarded as the best academy system in the World, De Toekomst Academy until 2008. He coached the U-12 Ajax developmental squad for two seasons as well as the U-19 squad for three season, while also managing scouting duties for the Dutch giants. During his time with the Ajax academy, Silooy won numerous accolades with the two youth teams including one Dutch title and two Dutch Super Cups. Under Silooy at the Ajax Academy, many players worked their way into successful careers on the Ajax First Team, the Dutch National Men’s Soccer Team, and other top international clubs.
Because of his successes, Silooy is highly sought after for his expertise in youth development. He is a member of the Youth Development Committee of the United States Soccer Federation (USSF), was named to Major League Soccer’s Youth Player Development Sub-committee, was honored with election to membership in the CBV, the elite Dutch Coaches Association, and currently holds a UEFA “A” coaching license, presented to a small number of coaches in Europe who have risen to the top of their field and demonstrated expertise.