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ECNL Jan 23, 2020

Virginia Development Academy hires Michael Welsh as Girls ECNL Director

WOODBRIDGE, VA – Virginia Development Academy (VDA) has announced the hiring of Michael Welsh to the position of Girls’ ECNL Director.

Welsh, who will join the club on February 1, 2020, will be responsible for the day-to-day management of the ECNL program and will work closely with VDA Technical Director Matt Lacey to enhance the club’s development platform for coaches, players, and teams.

“We are excited to welcome Michael to VDA,” said Matt Lacey. “After an extensive interview process, I believe he is an excellent fit to the club’s coaching profile. He is passionate, proactive, organized, a strong communicator, and a talented coach. I look forward to the work we will be able to achieve with his vision and direction of our girls ECNL program.”

Welsh, who is a USSF B licensed coach, comes to VDA from Braddock Road Elite where he led the club to an ECNL Top 25 ranking in 2019. He has coached multiple Mid-Atlantic Conference Champions and Champions League qualifiers, as well as multiple State Cup Champions. He has developed strong relationships with college coaches across the country to continue to aid the players in their recruiting process. Welsh also serves as an assistant coach with Northern Virginia United which plays in the National Premier Soccer League and previously coached in the Livingston Football Club in Scotland.

“I am thankful for the opportunity and excited to join VDA,” said Welsh. “The club has huge potential because of the work being done at partner clubs PWSI and VSA, especially in zone 1. The structure and leadership team at VDA will provide me the support to develop the players and guidance toward my personal growth as a director.”

“The importance of finding a proven coach and leader who understands the Northern Virginia market can’t be overstated,” said Mike Cullina, Executive Director. “Our commitment to the players and program required us to bring in someone who would challenge us as a staff and our players both on and off the field.

We’ve seen from a distance Coach Welsh’s level of success and after spending time with him, I am convinced he will help VDA become one of the top clubs for developing players.”

For more information about Virginia Development Academy, please visit Additional information, including the boys’ and girls’ coaching staff and ID sessions will be released in the coming days.