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Heard On The Wire

SoccerWire's look behind the curtain at the inner workings and hot gossip of American soccer, from the grassroots to the national team. Opinions, analysis and more.

Bradenton Residency is dead: What does it all mean?

The U.S. Soccer Federation announced the shuttering of its Bradenton Residency Program in Florida on Friday afternoon. Charles Boehm takes a look at the factors behind this abrupt revelation.

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By | March 17, 2017 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

Games & Thrones: ECNL vs. Girls DA cold war rages

A battle is quietly unfolding under the surface in the highest echelons of youth soccer in the U.S. Two rival leagues find themselves faced off in a battle of hearts and minds – and therefore wallets, writes Charles Boehm.

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By | January 31, 2017 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

LD rumors: Might Landon Donovan keep playing after all?

Is Landon Donovan’s comeback really over after nine games and barely two months? It’s far from clear how things will shake out, but we might well be seeing a lot more of arguably the most decorated player in U.S. soccer history in 2017 — and in a different place — than we thought, sources tell SoccerWire’s Charles Boehm.

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By | December 28, 2016 | 2 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Is Development Academy ready to admit new clubs in the DC area?

Is the D.C./Maryland/Virginia region underrepresented in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy? It’s a long-running debate in certain DMV soccer circles. Now The federation has taken notice, and looks ready to bring on some new local competition, reports SoccerWire’s Charles Boehm.

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By | December 4, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , ,

What’s the real problem? American soccer and a culture of mastery

The United States does not have a culture of mastery, writes guest columnist Kris Ward. We are an over-caffeinated, over-stimulated, over-worked, microwave culture that values results above all else. We are programmed only to see the fruits of the labor and trained to ignore, if not avoid, the labor itself. Yet there is a way.

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By | November 15, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Election blues: The youth soccer war drawing parallels to Trump-Clinton

This year’s U.S. Presidential election has been an ugly, stressful, draining experience for millions of Americans. So imagine Charles Boehm’s surprise (and dismay) to hear more than one veteran youth soccer insider use the Hillary Clinton vs. Donald Trump race as a comparison for our sport’s latest internecine squabble: the rise of U.S. Soccer’s new Girls Development Academy (set to debut next fall) as an alternative to/competitor with/destroyer of the established Elite Clubs National League.

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By | November 4, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Hope Solo, Carli Lloyd, NWSL and the problem with USWNT narratives

Hope Solo’s suspension and contract termination by U.S. Soccer has set tongue waggings this week. But in the meantime relatively few have noticed Carli Lloyd going AWOL from her club team, writes Charles Boehm.

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By | August 26, 2016 | 12 Comments | Tags: , , , , , ,

Boehm: Soccer fans should second-guess their hate for Hope Solo

Hope Solo: The mere name triggers grimaces and sneers among millions, from U.S. audiences put off by her checkered history of off-field incidents to the Brazilian fans booing her lustily during the Olympics. But Charles Boehm says she’s an-time great – and we’ll miss her when she’s gone.

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By | August 9, 2016 | 27 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

When a coach’s time is up: Behind the scenes of Sigi Schmid’s Seattle exit

A U.S. soccer coaching icon exited the limelight on Tuesday, as the struggling Seattle Sounders parted company with the only head coach they’ve ever had. Charles Boehm delves into the story behind the departure of Sigi Schmid.

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By | July 26, 2016 | 5 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

MLS vs. non-MLS: Can the Development Academy keep itself together?

By and large, it’s been a pretty good season for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. But a fundamental divide between the member clubs lurks under the surface, writes Charles Boehm.

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By | July 15, 2016 | 4 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Lucas Mendes’ POTY award shows absurdities of club-high school battle

Congratulations are due to Lucas Mendes, the 2015-2016 Gatorade National Boys High School Player of the Year. But through no intention or fault of his own, he’s also highlighted one of the many absurdities of the current youth soccer landscape — and it’s one that the U.S. Soccer Federation specifically set out to address several years ago, but seems to have merely made more complicated and contentious.

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By | May 10, 2016 | 5 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

ECNL drops another hint about boys expansion in vision, philosophy statement

In the wake of the U.S. Soccer Federation’s bombshell move to found a girls Development Academy, the Elite Clubs National League continues to lay out its response to that new development, most recently with a lengthy statement on the league’s website which amounts to a reaffirmation of the ECNL philosophy, and a strong hint that a boys division is on the way.

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By | April 22, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

USWNT’s cause racking up celebrity support, from “Daily Show” to President Obama

The U.S. Women’s National Team’s hunt for pay on par with their male counterparts, or at least a satisfactory improvement in their next collective bargaining agreement, keeps turning up in the headlines.

Continue Reading USWNT’s cause racking up celebrity support, from “Daily Show” to President Obama

By | April 12, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Dure: Ditching high-school soccer is a questionable decision

Eyeing U.S. Soccer’s latest repudiation of high-school soccer, Beau Dure asks: Is “development” so important that we have to take kids away from the camaraderie of high school and make their parents spend 10 months a year driving them somewhere else to play?

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By | March 3, 2016 | 8 Comments | Tags: , , , ,

Could NYCFC’s prized rookie Jack Harrison miss entire season due to pelvic injury?

With respected new coach Patrick Vieira and a litany of new players, New York City FC seem to be on their way to a fresh start in 2016 after a painful inaugural season in MLS. But it appears that some of the same organizational problems that bedeviled the wealthy club may remain, as doubt and uncertainty swirls around their top draft pick, former Wake Forest star Jack Harrison.

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U.S. Soccer sues U.S. Women’s National Team’s union: What you need to know

By now you’ve probably seen the startling news that the U.S. Soccer Federation has sued the United States Women’s National Soccer Team Players Association in federal court, amid negotiations over the USWNT’s collective bargaining agreement. The defending Olympic gold medalists and Women’s World Cup champions have already arrived in Frisco, Texas ahead of the opening […]

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By | February 5, 2016 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , , ,

SURVEY: How will Fall 2016 tournaments deal with coming age group changes?

Do you run a tournament that will have open applications prior to the coming age group changes from school year to calendar year for teams? We want your opinion for use in our ongoing reporting of what is the biggest administrative change to disrupt youth soccer in decades.

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By | January 29, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , ,

High-school dropouts: Will U.S. Soccer’s new girls Development Academy bar school play?

After a year or so of gossip, and nearly a month after SoccerWire.com’s report of U.S. Soccer’s plans for launching a girls equivalent to the Development Academy, it seems the federation is set to roll out its vision for a new elite girls national competition at some point in the next week. The first question on the lips of industry veterans is a familiar one: Will they ban high-school soccer for the girls, too?

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By | January 26, 2016 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Sources: Va. Tech product Patrick Nyarko returning to DMV to join D.C. United from Chicago Fire

Two straight years of meek MLS playoff exits have underlined D.C. United’s dire need for speed, width and attacking aggression. So the Black-and-Red have lined up a Hokie.

Continue Reading Sources: Va. Tech product Patrick Nyarko returning to DMV to join D.C. United from Chicago Fire

By | January 5, 2016 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , ,

PODCAST: US Club Soccer’s Kevin Payne talks player development

US Club Soccer has made big waves in its relatively short existence, and since Kevin Payne was named CEO in January 2015, the organization has continued to build new initiatives and carve out its own identity on a crowded, chaotic youth soccer scene. Payne was kind enough to chat in depth with SoccerWire.com’s Charles Boehm recently, discussing a range of topics from the “Players First” initiative to US Club Soccer’s growing partnership with Spain’s La Liga and the wider state of youth development in the United States and Canada.

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By | December 22, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Top original articles of 2015 on SoccerWire.com

It’s been a record year for readership in 2015 (and climbing) for SoccerWire.com! We’ve had some of the industries best and most respected writers contributing regularly all year, so it’s no surprise that the most popular pages on our entire website all year are dominated by these great original works!

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Sources: EPL’s Southampton FC to sign apparel deal with Under Armour as U.S. presence grows

Under Armour is about to step up its assault on the world soccer market. The Baltimore, Maryland-based apparel manufacturer is close to announcing a new, long-term kit and apparel deal with English Premier League side Southampton FC, multiple sources have told SoccerWire.com.

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By | November 20, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , ,

Jurgen Klinsmann said U.S. national teams are making “big strides” – here’s why that’s a problem

Jurgen Klinsmann certainly has a way with words sometimes. The USMNT head coach and technical director fired off another set of head-scratchers this week, launching into an impassioned defense of a U.S. youth national team system suffering through another topsy-turvy year featuring relatively little fodder for optimism about the future of the program.

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By | November 17, 2015 | 1 Comment | Tags: , , , , , , ,

PODCAST: Discussing Mexico’s youth successes with special guest Jon Arnold

On this week’s episode of The SoccerWire Show, hosts Tim Froh and Charles Boehm chat with Goal.com’s Jon Arnold, an expert on Mexican soccer and CONCACAF, about Mexico’s most recent youth national team successes, player development in Liga MX, and about the recent switch of defender Edwin Lara and goalkeeper Abraham Romero from the U.S. youth national teams to Mexico’s. Are there lessons here for the U.S. to learn, or is Mexico’s success at this level singular to its soccer culture? And what does success at the youth level even mean, anyway?

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By | November 6, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

PODCAST: Discussing Jurgen Klinsmann’s role as USSF technical director with special guest Wendy Thomas

On this week’s episode of The SoccerWire Show, hosts Tim Froh and Charles Boehm are joined by special guest Wendy Thomas. Thomas, an attorney by trade who also writes about soccer for American Soccer Now and Corner of the Galaxy, recently wrote an informative piece about Jurgen Klinsmann’s dual roles as USMNT head coach and USSF technical director. Thomas laid out all the changes that have been made by the fed since Klinsmann first entered the technical director role in 2013.

Continue Reading PODCAST: Discussing Jurgen Klinsmann’s role as USSF technical director with special guest Wendy Thomas

By | October 29, 2015 | 0 Comments | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,