First ever U.S. Soccer Girls’ DA Winter Showcase set to kick-off

(Via U.S. Soccer) – From Dec. 6-10 players from 68 U.S. Soccer Girls’ Development Academy Clubs will compete at Lakewood Ranch, Fla., during the 2017 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase.

Here are Five Things you should know about one of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy’s premier annual events.

Showcase Explained
Entering its 11th year of existence, the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Winter Showcase brings all full Academies together for a series of games at Premier Sports Campus in Lakewood Ranch, Fla. from Nov. 30-Dec. 11. With the launch of the Girls’ Development Academy earlier this fall, this will be the first time the event will include a Girls’ Winter Showcase to go along with a Boys’ Winter Showcase, with the former taking place from Dec. 6-11.

The event gives the U-15, U-16/17 and U-18/19 teams from each Academy Club three competitive games apiece against opposition they wouldn’t normally face during divisional play in the regular season. The crossover games are selected based on opposition, style of play, location and other factors to ensure the most meaningful games. The results count towards the overall regular season standings as part of a 10-month season that culminates with the Academy Championships next July.

+READ: Women’s Nike International Friendlies set to kickoff on Thursday

A Chance to Be Seen
With 315 games taking place over the course of five days, the U.S. Soccer Girls’ Development Academy Winter Showcase offers ample opportunity for talent identification.

On the Development Academy side, each game is scouted and evaluated by a U.S. Soccer Technical Advisor or Scout, while the Federation’s entire Youth National Team staff will also be on site for talent identification opportunities to evaluate current YNT pool players as well as players for future camps.

The Winter Showcase is a prime spot for college recruiting with over 300 scouts pre-registered for the 2017 event, hailing from all NCAA Divisions (200+ from Division 1 schools).

Since the start of the inaugural Girls’ Development Academy season in September 2017, 70% of the players called into Women’s Youth National Team camps are rostered full-time in the Girls’ Academy Clubs.

Featured Games Streamed Live
Can’t make it to Florida for the event? Check it out online as the U.S. Soccer Development Academy features six prime matchups live streamed through the Development Academy Facebook Page, U.S. Soccer YouTube Channel and on ussoccerda.com.

Check out the schedule below. Links will be made available 24 hours prior to kick-off on www.usssoccerda.com and on twitter @ussoccer_acad.

Age Group Date Matchup Time (ET)
U-15 Dec. 6 San Diego Surf vs. Sockers FC 11:30 a.m.
U-15 Dec. 6 Concorde Fire vs. Lonestar SC Academy 2:30 p.m.
U-16/17 Dec. 8 Boston Breakers Academy vs. Portland Thorns FC 12 p.m.
U-18/19 Dec. 8 Real Colorado vs. Crossfire Premier 2:15 p.m.
U-16/17 Dec. 10 Solar Soccer Club vs. Washington Spirit Academy 11 a.m.
U-18/19 Dec. 10 NTH Tophat vs. Penn Fusion Soccer Academy 1 p.m.

Academy Directors Meeting
On December 8, the U.S. Soccer Development Academy will host a meeting with all the Girls’ Academy Directors from around the country.

Collaborating with Academy leadership, Technical Advisors and Women’s Youth National Team coaches, Club Directors and coaches will benefit from the opportunity to share ideas with one another, receive practical education and engage in meaningful discussion. The meeting will also include information on programming, club standards and data on observations and trends of the Girls Development Academy.

Partnering with Nike International Friendlies
Another benefit of this week will be the integration of the Winter Showcase and the Nike Friendlies. The event will mark the first time the Women’s Nike International Friendlies will take place in conjunction with the Girls’ Development Academy Winter Showcase. The Women’s Nike International Friendlies is a round-robin tournament which will feature the U.S. U-20 WNT and the U-20 WNTs of Brazil, England and Finland. The combined events highlight the cohesion between the Development Academy Member Clubs and the Youth National Teams.

This year, the U.S. U-20 WNT will take on England (Dec. 7; 6:30 p.m. ET), Finland (Dec. 9; 6:30 p.m. ET) and Brazil (Dec. 11; 6:30 p.m. ET). All six Nike International Friendlies games will be streamed via U.S. Soccer’s Facebook Page, U.S. Soccer’s YouTube Page and ussoccer.com.