U.S. Soccer plans nationwide youth academy program

The U.S. Soccer Federation is creating a national youth league and academy program for teenage boys that will involve up to 2,400 players at both the U-15 and U-18 age groups, according to Washington Post reporter Steven Goff . "The federation plans to identify 60 to 80 youth clubs across the country," reports Goff. "Those clubs will then select players from the under-15 and under-18 age groups to participate in the academy."

Academy teams will play in a regionally structured national league in which the U-16 national team will compete. Goff reports that the plan, approved by the U.S. Soccer Federation's board of directors, encourages each MLS club to field teams; that national team coaches will scout the games; and that teams will play a 36- to 38-game schedule, plus friendlies.

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