The Southeast Pre-Academy League was founded in April 2011 as part of US Club Soccer’s National Premier Leagues (NPL), which are leagues throughout the country with the highest level of competition in a given area.
The Southeast Pre-Academy League, which will include the U-14 boys’ age group for the 2011-12 season, is comprised of 13 clubs from the U.S. Soccer Development Academy:
- CASL (NC)
- Charlotte SA (NC)
- Clearwater Chargers (FL)
- Concorde Fire (GA)
- Georgia United Soccer Alliance (GA)
- IMG Soccer Academy (FL)
- North Meck SC (NC)
- Kendall SC (FL)
- Richmond Kickers (VA)
- Richmond Strikers (VA)
- South Carolina United Battery (SC)
- Virginia Rush (VA)
- Weston FC (FL)
The Southeast Pre-Academy League will kick off in September 2011, and participating teams will play up to 18 total regular-season games over the fall and spring season, depending on their divisional placement.
There will also be two optional NPL Showcases over the course of the year that will feature scouting by U.S. Soccer national staff. US Club Soccer will operate and manage the NPL Showcases, which will include 2-3 games for each participating team over three days. Further details on NPL Showcases will be released in the coming weeks.
Southeast Pre-Academy League champions, determined in a post-season playoff event, will compete at the inaugural National Premier Leagues Champions Cup in July 2012.
“We’re definitely excited to be part of the National Premier League,” said North Meck SC Executive Director Thomas Finlay. “The format of the league will allow us to place our U-14 boys in an environment that replicates that of the U.S. Development Academy. This will be a direct pipeline towards our U.S. Academy U-16 program as well as increased opportunities for competitive play at the highest level for all 97/98 North Meck players.”
About the National Premier Leagues (NPL):
The NPL offers a platform for long-term player development by providing consistent and meaningful games between the region’s top players and also provides opportunities for players to be scouted by U.S. Soccer national staff. Winners of each league within the NPL will qualify for US Club Soccer’s National Premier Leagues Champions Cup.
Leagues within the NPL currently include the Midwest Developmental League, NorCal Premier League, Northeast Pre-Academy League, Northern Illinois Soccer League, Oregon Premier League, Southeast Pre-Academy League and Texas Pre-Academy League.
The NPL is an important component of US Club Soccer’s 10-year vision to refine the landscape for competitive youth soccer. The vision recognizes that:
- Properly-structured youth soccer clubs are the vehicle through which player development does and must occur in the United States.
- Clubs should play in leagues that provide meaningful games, allow establishment of the proper training-to-game ratio, and eliminate calendar congestion.
- National Premier Leagues, as well as the best clubs, should be integrated in US Club Soccer’s id2 national identification and development program, include Player Development Programs in select local markets, and work closely with U.S. Soccer staff regarding player identification, and player and coach development.
About US Club Soccer:
US Club Soccer is a non-profit organization whose mission is to develop competitive club soccer in the United States. A member of the United States Soccer Federation since July 2001, US Club Soccer has grown to include member clubs and leagues in all 50 states. In addition to sanctioning and administering tournaments, leagues and other competitions as well as offering a range of programs for its members, US Club Soccer annually conducts the National Cup. US Club Soccer also directs its own player identification and development program – id2.