2018-2019 Season to Feature a Minimum of 22 Teams Playing U9 Through U19 with Participation in Norcal, NPL, and US Soccer Development Academy
SAN FRANCISCO, CA. ––The San Francisco Elite Academy (SFEA) announced today a substantial expansion of its soccer program for youth players. Beginning with the upcoming tryout period this May, SFEA will add an additional U.S. Soccer Development Academy (USSDA) team at the U13 Boys age level (2006 birth year) as well as eight new teams across boys and girls at the U9 through U13 age levels (2010-2005 birth years).
SFEA’s addition of this new youth program comes on the heels of on-the-field success this past fall as well as the introduction of a number of new, innovative programs to support player development, like SAQ+ and Peak Performance. Today’s expansion announcement also furthers SFEA’s commitment to its mission to develop elite soccer talent in San Francisco and represents yet another milestone in raising the bar for all of San Francisco’s youth soccer players.
“This starts an exciting next chapter for the San Francisco Elite Academy,” said Eddie Soto Director of Coaching for Boys and Men’s Head Coach at the University of San Francisco. “Our continued growth is something our families have been asking for, so we’re happy to be announcing we are adding younger players to our soccer programs across the board.”
At the upcoming tryouts in May, SFEA will be selecting players for the following teams, at a minimum, for the 2018-2019 playing season:
2010, 2009, 2008, 2007 (USSDA), 2006 (USSDA), 2005 (NPL), 2004 (NPL), 2003 (NPL), 2002 (NPL), 2000/2001 (NPL)
2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006 (PRE-NPPL), 2005 (NPL), 2004 (NPL), 2004, 2003 (NPL), 2003, 2002 (NPL), 2000/2001 (NPL)
“The San Francisco Elite Academy began as a promise,” said Jim Millinder, SFEA’s Director of Coaching for Girls and Women's Head Coach at the University of San Francisco. “We wanted to provide the city’s most dedicated youth players a program that elevated the level of coaching, the level of competitive play, and the level of daily training. Our new younger age group teams are about doing the same. Along with our technical partner clubs, we’ll be working to improve the foundational environment for youth players and help the next generation of great San Francisco soccer players get started.”
While a few final details about the new youth program continue to be finalized, SFEA will again be leading the market in terms of quality coaching, focussed training facilities, and development-based curriculum. In addition, SFEA youth teams will be supported with additional and specialized training as well as unique playing opportunities throughout the year.
“Our coaching staff is more highly-licensed and experienced than any other local club,” said Chris Flanagan, Director of Soccer Operations. “Together, we’ve conceived a youth program that better addresses the full-spectrum of developmental needs of the younger kids. We intend to be the club that sets a new standard for how younger soccer players are developed in San Francisco.”
For now, SFEA youth teams will be limited in number so as to provide high value and close attention to each team, as well as to recognize that younger players often choose clubs for a variety of non-soccer related reasons. Through SFEA’s Technical Partner program, youth players at other clubs will have a chance to benefit from parts of SFEA’s youth program if their club chooses to participate.
SFEA President Joe Dugan summed it up this way: “The combined lessons of our U.S. Soccer Development Academy and other specialized programs, along with the tremendous success we’ve had with our NPL-level U14 through U19 teams, have led us to establishing a more thoughtful and improved performance environment for the city’s youngest players. Since the founding of SFEA, three and a half years ago, we’ve been working tirelessly to create more opportunities for soccer players. Today’s announcement is an exciting leap forward as we’re now prepared to take the positive impact we’re making on players and expand it to more ages.”
Families and players interested in SFEA’s U.S. Soccer Development Academy or our new Youth Program are encouraged visit our website at sfea.org for more information.
The San Francisco Elite is a youth soccer club for elite-level and aspiring youth soccer players in San Francisco. The organization provides next level training at a critical juncture in a player’s development by offering highly licensed and experienced coaching, soccer-first facilities, and a proven development curriculum, backed by specialized coaching and programs. SFEA was the first team in San Francisco to have a U.S. Soccer Development Academy program and places more teams in US Club’s National Premier League than any other San Francisco club. In addition, SFEA is committed to leaving no dedicated player behind and provides over $100,000 in financial aid and scholarship funding annually.
About U.S. Soccer Development Academy
Following a comprehensive review of elite player development in the United States and around the world, U.S. Soccer created the Development Academy in 2007 for male players in the U-15 to U-18 age groups. In 2013, the Academy expanded to include the U-13/14 age group, and in 2016, the Academy launched the U-12 age group, which has continued to improve development by setting standards and improving the everyday environment for elite players and clubs. Academy alumni have progressed to play at elite amateur and professional levels with 109 Academy graduates rostered in the MLS in 2016 and 23 Academy players earning U.S. MNT caps.
The SF Elite Academy
Our mission is to provide an elite level program for soccer players in San Francisco.