's Premier Soccer Academies, the nation's only soccer-only private residency program, has teamed up with Ohio's Cleveland Alliance Soccer
Association to form two U.S. Soccer Development Academy teams (U-16 and U-18) in a move that signals the end of its ambitious residency program.
PSA, whose facilities in Lorain, Ohio,
near where Friedel grew up, include a state-of-the-art $11 million soccer complex, will instead put more training emphasis on Ohio youth. Under this new formula, the PSA-CASA Academy Team would
include players from the Great Lakes Region.
"We need to get back to focusing on the talent within our community, Ohio and our region," said Friedel, the PSA founder. "When we
first put the building blocks together on our desire to improve the way players are developed in this country my intent was and still is focusing on the players nearest to where I grew up in
northeast Ohio. CASA has proven over the years to develop local talented players and with us combining our coaches and using our facilities we will be able to develop greater numbers of
local/regional players more efficiently."
As of Feb. 1, players selected for the PSA-CASA academy teams will pay nothing.
PSA is also creating an in-house training program
for boys and girls ages 6-12 and an early player development class each week for players ages 3-6. It will continue to operate camp programs.
The residency program had attracted players
from across the country, as well as from Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, Zambia, Mexico and Canada. Victor Garza
from Texas and Joel Nash
from Alabama entered U.S. Soccer's U-17 Residency Program in the fall after spending time at PSA. Venezuelan Visnu Maharaj
, 16, is
reportedly heading to preseason camp with MLS's Colorado Rapids.