CHARLESTON, S.C. – After strong showings against top European youth academy teams in each of the past four years, US Club Soccer has announced that members of the 2014 id2 National Selection International Tour will aim to continue the momentum Feb. 27 – March 10 in Italy.
The id2 National Selection International Tour is the final programming element of the id2 Program cycle targeting boys born in 2000, which included four id2 Training Camps held during 2013.
The roster (found below) consists of 17 boys born in 2000 and one born in 2001, representing 16 different clubs.
During the tour, the team will have the opportunity to train, attend games and compete against youth teams from well-known professional clubs while gaining a unique educational and cultural experience.
The traveling party will arrive in Northern New Jersey on Feb. 27 for a brief domestic base camp before departing to Italy the evening of Feb. 28. After spending the initial portion of the trip in Florence, the squad will transfer to Milan and return to American soil on March 10.
A challenging schedule awaits the squad, with games scheduled against the Giovanissimi Regionali squads of ACF Fiorentina (March 4), Inter Milan (March 6) and Juventus FC (March 7).
“Playing top youth academy teams in Italy will expose our players to European talent while being immersed in a different culture,” Gerry McKeown, US Club Soccer’s id2 Boys Program Director and head coach of the id2 National Selection, said. “We’re looking forward to the challenge.”
id2 National Selection International Tour players will also watch two Serie A professional matches: Lazio at ACF Fiorentina onMarch 2 and ACF Fiorentina at Juventus FC on March 9.
This will mark the fifth consecutive year for the id2 National Selection International Tour, following on the heels of successful trips to Germany and the Netherlands in 2010, England and Scotland in 2011, and Spain in 2012 and 2013. Over the past four years, id2 National Selection members have played FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atlético Madrid, Manchester City FC, Everton FC, Celtic FC, AFC Ajax, Borussia Dortmund and PSV Eindhoven, among others.
Consistent with US Club Soccer’s philosophy that identification and development should be free to players, the organization is funding the trip in conjunction with the strong support of Nike; there is no cost to players.
Aided by their time at id2 National Selection International Tours and id2 Training Camps, numerous alums have advanced into U.S. Soccer’s National Team programs. The id2 Program is an Olympic Development Program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Soccer Federation.
The 2014 id2 National Selection International Tour is again being coordinated in conjunction with Premier International Tours. Find the roster here.