New York – New York City FC, the new Major League Soccer (MLS) team, which begins its first ever MLS campaign in under a month’s time, has announced that it is opening a new youth Academy.
Under the supervision of Sporting Director, Claudio Reyna, and Youth Technical Coordinator, Rodrigo Marion, the Club aims to create one of the leading youth talent development centers in the United States.
The new Academy, which will have strong ties with the local community and links in to New York City FC’s 11 Youth Affiliate Clubs, is designed to invest in local youth talent, providing first class training to develop young players and help them reach their full potential.
Starting with a single team at U-13 and U-14 level, comprising players drawn both from New York City FC’s existing Youth Affiliate Club network and elsewhere, the youngsters will be schooled by top coaches implementing the style of play used by Head Coach Jason Kreis in the first team. The players selected for the Academy will be assessed at regular NYCFC hosted Talent Centers and while playing for Youth Affiliate Clubs. Academy coaches will be looking for players both with the talent and character to succeed at the highest levels.
Further age groups will be added to the Academy in the years ahead.
Training will be designed to enhance the players’ existing qualities and offer support in improving technical ability, aiming to produce both quality soccer players and rounded individuals, educated in the New York City FC style, with a skill set which will serve them well for the future.
The U-13/14 team will compete in the US Soccer Development Academy League beginning in the 2015-16 season.
Using this side as a strong base for growth in younger age groups, the Academy will give opportunities to the deep pool of talent existing within the five boroughs and New York Greater Metro area, at strategic meeting points in the heart of the community, with their historic connections to the story of soccer in the city.
Claudio Reyna, Sporting Director at New York City FC, said:
“I couldn’t be happier to announce our new Academy. We have been building the foundations over the past months to get us ready to launch the Academy and everything has come together to ensure that sustainable youth development can be at the heart of our Club.
“It is particularly pleasing for me to be involved with our Academy. I am passionate about developing young players; something I was very proud to be involved with as Youth Technical Director of the US Soccer Federation.
“This is another critical step as we build New York City FC. This is a Club, not just a team and we want to develop a long and sustainable future, rooted in our community. We want to show the world how much young talent there is in and around New York and make sure we are playing an active and enthusiastic role in nurturing it.
“We believe that starting with one team at this age group, we can give those players the best pathway to the senior roster, giving them at least four years playing in the style which we want to establish. This will have the added benefit of ensuring a strong pipeline of talent from our Affiliate Club network.
“We have a lot more to do, but there is no better starting point than creating the infrastructure through which we can develop excellent young players and help to equip them with the right personal and technical skills to succeed.”
With close ties to the recently opened City Football Academy in Manchester, home to sister Club, Barclays Premier League Champions, Manchester City FC, the New York Academy will benefit from the technology and resources across the City Football network.
The announcement comes just a week after New York City FC unveiled a new Youth Development League, focusing on boys’ teams at ages U-9, U-10 and U-11, which will comprise Youth Affiliate Clubs from the New York Metro area.