Academy Philosophy

Our program has been created to enhance the quality of the youth development experience for young players in our region by providing them an outlet that is skill and game intelligence development focussed. The program has been designed to compliment youth club and/or school activity by providing skilled players a high-level, club neutral, training and competition environment to develop their game and overall athletic physical and mental base.

The YSC / Union coaching method incorporates “best practices” from youth professional academies in Europe and South America. Our philosophy is embodied in the following three words:

DREAM: YSC / Union program will provide its players an inspirational learning environment designed to amplify their PASSION for the game of soccer. We believe the experience of pointing your passion towards a dream will teach valuable and rewarding life-long lessons. Our program provides an authentic and direct link to the Philadelphia Union will provide our participants a truly unique and inspirational learning environment. Why is this important? Because passionate players are apt to go out and practice more often on their own. Love of the game is the most important gift anyone in youth soccer could give a youth player. Our goal is to amplify this passion in every Union Juniors and Academy player.

PERFORM: High performance players are technically skilled players. Consequently, we place tremendous emphasis on technical skill development and individual mastery of the ball. We will also focus on speed and quality of decision making and speed of play in an effort to enhance Soccer IQ. Technical skills are the foundation of ALL great players and are the building blocks of positive self-esteem.

EXCEL: The higher level you play the game the more important your decision making becomes (both on and off the field). Sports science data indicates attitude and behavior can be learned or acquired skills and we place heavy emphasis on the mental components of youth development. Our motto of “if I can train my feet, I can train my mind” declares to our participants’ the importance of attitude and core values such as effort, pride, and respect. Our method is designed to develop in our participants an attitude in which hard work is held in the highest esteem. YSC’s Cristinia Fink (a PhD in Sports Psychology), works directly with the Technical Staff to incorporate sports psychology elements into our curriculum.