As part of an overall goal to improve the player development pathway for elite boys soccer players, the U.S. Soccer Development Academy is adding a U-15 single age group for the 2017-2018 season. The strategic move to expand the pathway is part of a long-term plan for player development, and will provide Academy clubs with the opportunity to enhance their efforts to develop world-class players.
Crossfire Premier will field one of the four U-15 Development Academy squads in the Pacific Northwest, with the other three belonging to the academies of the region’s three MLS franchises. U-15 DA teams for 2017-18 will consist of players born after January 1, 2003.
The addition of the U-15 single-age group allows Crossfire to provide a continuous pathway for players from Zone 1 (age 6-11), through Zone 2 (age 12-17), and into Zone 3 (age 18 and above), as the club also has Development Academy teams at every other age.
2017-18 Crossfire boys DA teams:
U-12 (players born in 2006 and 2007)
U-13 (players born in 2005)
U-14 (players born in 2004)
U-15 (players born in 2003)
U-16/17 (players born in 2001 and 2002)
U-18/19 (players born in 1999 and 2000)
Having single age groups throughout the foundational ages (U-12 through U-15) creates a player pathway with no gaps in maturity. This further allows Academy coaches and technical staff to mitigate relative-age effect and gives an additional ability to play younger players up when they are ready.
The goals of the new U-15 single age group will continue to be aligned with U.S. Soccer Development Academy objectives, which include more training, playing fewer total games, but more meaningful games. The Crossfire U-15 Development Academy team will play a full-time DA schedule, playing the same opponents as the U-16/17 and U-18/19 DA teams at home and away within the DA Northwest Division.
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