Hardware is not exclusive to the Sporting KC first team and the Sporting KC Academy is ready to add another trophy of their own to the case.
The Sporting KC U-14s will square off against Des Moines Menace Red at 10 a.m. CT in the US Youth Soccer Region II U-15 championship in Fox Cities, Wis. The match will be broadcast free in high definition.
The Sporting KC Academy U-14's are looking to defend their title after winning the US Youth Soccer Region II Championship in 2014. The winner of today's match will punch their ticket to the 2015 US Youth Soccer National Championships in Tulsa, Okla.
In each of my affiliate visits thus far, I have communicated a distinct message to the coaches and board of directors: The pathway to the pros. This message represents a topic that means a great deal to me.
Growing up, my path to the pros was not only unclear, but also almost non-existent. Players in today’s culture have the opportunity to associate themselves with an MLS club not only locally, but regionally as well as nationally.
Our Academy Affiliate program offers this clear pathway and as our 2015 Academy tryouts have concluded, an astounding 197 players -- out of approximately 750 total trialists -- were represented from 10 different Academy Affiliate teams. Of those 197 players, 32 players were added to the Sporting KC Academy teams from the U12, U13, U14, U16 and U18 age groups.
The U12 age group is a tremendous indicator of the impact of our Academy Affiliate program. For example:
- Sixty-two out of 150 players trying out came from our Affiliate program
- Eight of our affiliates across the nation were represented
- Fifteen out of 22 players, or roughly 70%, of players on the U12’s were developed within the affiliate program before making the U12 Academy team
This is a very exciting and clear indicator that our affiliate system is working and we are headed in an extremely positive direction. Families are moving to Kansas City to accommodate this prestigious accomplishment, distinctly demonstrating the change in the culture of youth soccer.
A special thank you to all of our Academy technical staff who poured in countless hours providing a competitive environment for which the enormous talent pool could compete in. Also, congratulations to all of the players who made Academy rosters or trials.
Sporting Blue Valley, Sporting Lincoln, Sporting Kaw Valley, Sporting Lee's Summit and Omaha FC are all represented in the Academy rosters and this should further encourage affiliate clubs’ participation in related experiences.
More information regarding Academy tryouts and rosters can be found here.
The SKC Academy U16s finished the second phase of the 2014-15 Generation adidas Cup with a 1-0 loss to FC Dallas on Monday. Despite heavy wind and rain, Sporting KC held Dallas scoreless through the first half. A second half penalty kick, however, sealed the win for the Texas squad, who is currently in first place in the USSDA U-15/U-16 Central Conference with a 10-1-2 record.
The Sporting KC Academy U-16s entered Monday following a two-goal victory over an MLS opponent on Saturday at the Houston Sports Park. The win secured a top-two finish in the Central Region standings, qualifying for the coveted GA bracket at the national event to be held in Dallas in April.
The Sporting KC U16's prevailed 2-0 over the Colorado Rapids with goals from Fernando Borges and Chase Bromstedt. Goalkeepers Steve Tekesky and Dakotah Bainter combined for the clean sheet as the squad increased their goal difference to +9 in the competition (11 goals scored, two goals allowed) thus far.
The Sporting Kansas City Academy U16's opened "Event 2" of the 2014-15 Generation adidas Cup with a 3-1 win over the Columbus Crew on Friday at the Houston Sports Park. The victory keeps Sporting KC atop the Central Region standings with a perfect 3-0-0 record and a +7 goal difference (nine goals scored, two goals conceded).
The 2014-15 GA Cup features 18 academy teams affiiliated with MLS teams, divided into three regions (East, Central and West). The top two teams from each group will qualify for the "GA" bracket at the national event in April, while the remaining teams will qualify to the "ESP" bracket.
The United States Under-14 Boys' National Team made it back-to-back days with victories in Spain with a 4-0 victory over an Academy side from Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday. Thirteen-year-old Sporting Kansas City Academy defender/midfielder Cameron Duke was again in the lineup for the United States, who defeated Real Madrid's youth side 2-0 on Tuesday behind a brace from Ulysses Llanez.
Duke, the younger brother of Christian Duke, has become a regular as of late with the youngest U.S. youth national team. Duke travelled from his home in Olathe, Kansas to California for a U.S. U14 BNT training camp in October and most recently joined the squad in Florida last month.
He has now made the most of his time in Madrid as one of 20 players on head coach Brian Johnson's roster. The U.S. will close out the camp with a friendly against Extremadura on Saturday.
Follow @ussoccer_ynt on Twitter for updates.
Cameron Duke pictured on far right, wearing No. 4 jersey for US U14 BNT
The Sporting KC Academy's Cameron Duke featured for the U.S. Under-14 Boys' National Team on Tuesday in a 2-0 victory over Real Madrid. Duke -- an Olathe, Kansas native -- is one of 20 players in Spain for the 11-day training camp that began Feb. 6 and will continue through Feb. 16.
The U.S. squad is led by head coach Brian Johnson and will play two additional Academy sides before returning home. The team will first face Rayo Vallecano tomorrow before taking on Extremadura on Feb. 14. Follow @ussoccer_ynt on Twitter for updates.
Who can resist Chipotle and soccer? Our point exactly!
The Sporting Kansas City Academy has teamed up with Chipotle to raise money for the 2014-15 season. Sporting KC fans are encouraged to join Academy midfielder and Chipotle Youth Homegrown athlete winner Roman Knox at the Chipotle on 135th & Metcalf in Overland Park, Kansas on Monday, November 17 from 4-9 p.m. CT. Chipotle will donate 50% of proceeds to the Sporting KC Academy when customers show the cashier this flyer.
Bring your friends. Let's make this a party.
The Sporting KC Academy program has proven valuable in recent years for Sporting KC Manager Peter Vermes, who has added talent to his senior roster with the homegrown signings of Kevin Ellis, Jon Kempin and Erik Palmer-Brown. Ellis was consistently seen in the starting lineup for Sporting KC this season, appearing in 20 MLS matches, while Kempin and Palmer-Brown made their MLS debuts. The 21-year-old goalkeeper earned MLS Save of the Week honors in his first two appearances for Sporting Kansas City and 17-year-old Palmer-Brown was the youngest player to appear in an MLS match this season.
This weekend of October 10-13, Sporting KC and Swope Soccer Village will host the U17, U14 & U12 Central Region MLS Generation adidas Cup featuring Six MLS Academy clubs, including Sporting KC, Chicago Fire, Colorado Rapids, Columbus Crew, FC Dallas and Houston Dynamo.
U17 Division: All six MLS Academies will compete in the U17 division featuring two MLS GA cup games on Friday and Sunday with one Friendly on Monday. The schedule can be found online at www.mlssoccer.com/generationadidascup/2015.
U14 Division: Sporting KC, Chicago Fire, Colorado Rapids & Columbus Crew will play in the U14 division. Games will be held on Friday, Saturday & Sunday. The schedule can be found online at www.sportingkc.com/academy/mlsgacup-u14-2014.
U12 Division: Sporting KC, Chicago Fire, & Houston Dynamo will play in the U12 division. Multiple games will be held on Saturday (7v7) & Sunday (11v11). The schedule can be found online at www.sportingkc.com/academy/mlsgacup-u12-2014.
For more information on Swope Soccer Village including a map of the fields, please visit www.sportingkc.com/swope-park-training-center.
You can also get updates by following @SKCAcademy on Twitter!