Philadelphia Union announce Youth Development Affiliates and program changes

Eight clubs, including two out of area join for 2013-2014 season

Academy team with Brewer

Photo Credit: 
Greg Carroccio

Philadelphia Union are pleased to announce that the following clubs have achieved Youth Development Affiliate status for 2013-14 season. Each of the clubs below have demonstrated a commitment to excellence in youth development and passion for sharing, growing and learning in partnership with Philadelphia Union for the benefit of youth players and coaches in their respective programs.

  • 1776 United FC
  • Cape Fear Soccer Club
  • Continental FC (FC DELCO/Spirit United)
  • Real New Jersey Soccer Club
  • Penn Legacy
  • Philadelphia Soccer Club
  • San Diego Soccer Club
  • West Chester United/Penn Fusion

“Philadelphia Union are committed to youth development and we believe it’s critical for the evolution of the American game for all of us in youth soccer to collaborate and share best practices to help push the game forward. We are eager to share and learn alongside our YDA partners who have all shown a strong desire to never stop learning, which we believe is a critical component to success,” said Richie Graham, YSC Founder/Philadelphia Union Youth Development Managing Director.

The Youth Development Affiliate (“YDA”) program is a coaching education and player development driven initiative formed by Philadelphia Union to create a network of like-minded clubs and coaches focused on improving coaching education and player development methodologies in the greater Philadelphia market, as well as other key markets.  The YDA program is open to all youth clubs that meet certain technical criteria and share the Philadelphia Union’s passion for youth soccer development.

“We believe that youth development is our future.  Partnering with the highest-level soccer clubs, that share our vision, has been part of the Union’s philosophy from the beginning as part of our commitment to create one of the best youth development academies in North America,” stated Philadelphia Union CEO & Operating Partner Nick Sakiewicz.

Philadelphia Union have invested significant resources and energy into developing an innovative and holistic youth development program including a youth academy technical staff with three UEFA Pro licensed coaches, and a sports science team of experts in psychology, athlete development, nutrition, and coaching education. YDA partners are provided the opportunity to access, share, and utilize the resources of Philadelphia Union to improve their learning environments and coaching methodologies.

“I am convinced that, over time, any success we have will be built on a foundation of partnership and collaboration,” said Philadelphia Union Academy Director Tommy Wilson. “We are confident that our affiliate program will be at the forefront of this initiative.”

The YDA program’s primary ambition is to meaningfully connect YDA clubs with the developmental philosophy of the Union creating a network and a platform for sharing best practices to provide opportunities for both coaches and players to grow and develop. 

Visit www.philadelphiaunion.com/academy/yda-program for more information.