Following a competitive Generation adidas Cup regional event this past weekend, the U-18, U-16 and U-14 D.C. United Academy teams will begin the 2013-14 U.S. Soccer Development Academy (USSDA) regular season Saturday, Sept. 7. This season marks the first time all three youth squads will play in the USSDA as the U-14 team, considered Pre-Academy in 2012-13, joins the U-16 and U-18 squads that have been members since the Academy’s inaugural season in 2007.
In two games this weekend at Morven Park in Leesburg, Va., United’s Generation adidas Cup squad drew one match and lost another in the tournament’s regional event. In the first game, United played to a scoreless tie with the Philadelphia Union, eventually losing 4-3 on PKs. In the second game against Toronto FC, Antonio Bustamante (Springfield, Va., D.C. United pre-Academy) netted a goal, but the Black-and-Red would go on to lose the match 3-1. The next regional event will be held in Montreal over Columbus Day Weekend – Friday, Oct. 10 to Monday, Oct. 14 – with the national event’s exact date and location yet to be determined.
“Overall, the first weekend of the regional Generation adidas Cup matches provided an excellent setting to see where the players are at the beginning of the season,” said D.C. United U-16 Academy Head Coach Tom Torres. “It was also great to see what the other MLS academies are doing and how they have developed and progressed since we last met them.”
During the 2012-13 season, the U-14 squad had four players invited to the U.S. Soccer Training Center in Germantown, Md., and the side also qualified for the National Premier League (NPL) playoffs before being ousted in the quarterfinals. Returning 13 players from last season, the U-14s will open this year’s campaign against Baltimore Bays Chelsea at Morven Park in Leesburg, Va., on Saturday, Sept. 7 at 12 p.m. To view a complete schedule of the D.C. United U-14 Academy team, click here.
D.C. United’s U-16 and U-18 teams both finished third in their respective East Conference Atlantic Divisions during the 2012-13 season and will return some of their top players from that campaign. The U-16 team retained 14 players from last season as the U-18 team has returned 18, including the addition of the top three scorers (Gerson Umana 18 - Graydon Hester /Christophe Koffi - 10 each) from last season’s U-16 squad. Both the U-18s and U-16s will open play Saturday, Sept. 7 against the Baltimore Bays Chelsea at Morven Park in Leesburg, Va., at 12 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., respectively. A complete schedule for the U-16 team can be found here, and the U-18 schedule can be found here.
Rosters for all three D.C. United Academy teams were announced last week. For a complete recap, click here.
About D.C. United Academy
D.C. United's Academy teams and training programs are designed to find and develop the top players in the Washington region. The club’s coaches and staff emphasize playing attractive, possession-oriented soccer. The ultimate goal is to prepare players for the club's First Team or the nation's top university teams. Since the Academy’s inaugural season in 2007, it has seen six players signed directly to the First Team (Bill Hamid, Andy Najar, Ethan White, Conor Shanosky, Michael Seaton and Collin Martin), nine players called up to their respective National Teams (U-14-U-18) and 14 players announce their intention to attend 10 NCAA Division-I programs to play college soccer for the 2013 fall season.