Union select youth academy partner

YSC Union Juniors to provide world-class development for players ages 8-12

CHESTER, Pa. (September 29, 2009) — Philadelphia Union have selected YSC Academy as their partner for an innovative training program specifically designed for young athletes, ages 8—12 years old. The program features two key components: it is “club neutral” and it is “barrier free”, enabling gifted players and youth clubs throughout the Greater Philadelphia Region to receive guidance and skill development under the watchful eye of World Class coaches at no cost to them.

“We are entrusting this highly critical first phase of our youth development to YSC because they really understand what it takes to develop this impressionable age group and their excellent leadership and the focus of their organization on teaching kids how to play the game right,” said Philadelphia Union CEO & Operating Partner Nick Sakiewicz. “Their culture and philosophy fit so well with ours. Because of that, we know we’ve selected the right partner. With them we can create an extraordinary environment for proper youth soccer development and learning for kids under 12.”

“At YSC and Philadelphia Union, we believe that kids should play with their friends on their local club teams,” suggested Richie Graham, Founder YSC Academy. “It is important to add, the YSC Union Juniors program will not form all-star teams to compete in local leagues. Our program is more about nurturing talents and skills and connecting our kids with their Philadelphia Union soccer heroes.”

In addition to the YSC facility in King of Prussia, Philadelphia Union will be working to establish four-six satellite locations so the program can reach the inner city and ethnic communities throughout the entire area. Like the visionaries who created the program and partnership between the two entities, Philadelphia Union Team Manager Peter Nowak and YSC Academy Director Iain Munro are in total agreement about how to build this program. Each has played the world’s game at its highest levels and both men have attained the highest coaching certificate available, the UEFA PRO license.

“We believe it’s best to start early, expanding young people’s soccer education and understanding of the game,” said Philadelphia Union Team Manager Peter Nowak. “In that way, young players will benefit from the knowledge and experience our coaching staff will provide for the program. It’s a unique opportunity for these hungry young athletes to connect with us—to envision themselves as professionals, aspiring to play for Philadelphia Union.”

“Together, our experience-based program has been developed into what we believe will prove to be a thoughtful and very successful soccer development curriculum,” added YSC’s Munro. “We’re eager to get going with YSC Union Juniors and see the kids’ skills grow.”