Energy drink Red Bull, which owns the New York MLS franchise of the same name, is launching a U-17 national championship that comprises 16 teams and consists of four weekend-long tournaments, the first of which takes place Nov. 17-19, 2006, in Raleigh, N.C., in conjunction with the Capital Area Soccer League (CASL) Shootout.
''Red Bull National League 17 further demonstrates Red Bull's commitment to soccer in this country,'' says Bruce Arena, the New York Red Bulls head coach and sporting director. ''This will give young players the opportunity to compete against not just the best clubs in their region, but the best in the entire nation. We are excited to be a part of a league that will showcase some of the top youth teams in the United States.''
The Red Bull National League 17 Teams
West:Arsenal FC, Colorado Rush, Crossfire Premier, Dallas Texans, Irvine Strikers, Nomads, Pateadores, Solar.
East: Atlanta United, CASL Elite, Chicago Magic, Chicago Sockers, Concorde Fire, FC Delco, PDA, Scott Gallagher.
The New York Red Bulls U-17 team will join the league for the 2007-08 season. It will also host the 2006-07 winner, to be crowned in a Chicago weekend tournament May 26-28, 2007, in a Giants Stadium game.