Turning Pro at 13

You said that "it's all politics." To me that clearly discounts their accomplishments.

I'm curious as what people think is the # of truly elite players in the USA per age group. Let's take the 72 GDA clubs plus the 94 ECNL clubs. That's 166 clubs playing in the 2 elite leagues. Let's add another 30 clubs not in these leagues who truly have top flight competitive teams. That's 200 clubs. 20 players per team per club. That's 4000 players. Let's add another 500-600 players from miscellaneous. 4500 players. Let's say that the USYNT picks from 2 birth years, so that's about 9,000 players to chose from. How many of these are truly elite? 1%? 5%? I'd say it's closer to 1%, so about 100 truly elite players. USYNT picks 20 from this list of very deserving players. How do they do this? Is there some politics in this? Sure, but any of these 100 merit a spot based on their accomplishments. I bet all 20 of the players on the list would likely be in the 100 somewhere. I'm also curious as to what people think is the number of athletes in this 100 truly elite player group that have never been seen or scouted.
When you know ahead of time that the 20/100 picked will all be DA it’s all politics, not just a little. If they are transparent about it as someone in a previous post indicated they are, then it’s all good because we are all on notice with respect to making a US national team.

Now if you’re a regular sports fan with no dd’s in the game and you find out there were a couple of super studs that didn’t get picked because of these politics then you might get pissed off at US Soccer. But for the rest of us we all know what we’re getting into, just don’t try to convince me there’s nothing rigged with a roulette table that comes up red 100x in a row.
 

Sidekick

BRONZE
On point with the whole DA thing not being the only place to find the best players!!!If OM was such a pro, let her try hanging with the big girls at WC and you’ll see she’s right where she belongs, with the younger team! I truly believe many of the girls are actually more talented than OM that are on the same U16 Girls National Team. She’s talented and would’ve excelled if she stayed with her peers!!
 

DJB

BRONZE
On point with the whole DA thing not being the only place to find the best players!!!If OM was such a pro, let her try hanging with the big girls at WC and you’ll see she’s right where she belongs, with the younger team! I truly believe many of the girls are actually more talented than OM that are on the same U16 Girls National Team. She’s talented and would’ve excelled if she stayed with her peers!!
I am not sure why you are so upset about OM...did she do something directly to you?

I have had the pleasure of watching her train numerous times with top level (D1 college) 99/00 aged girls. She more than holds her own over the course of a 2 hour practice even though she was giving up 3-5 inches and 20-40 lbs on many of these athletes. In fact, I would argue she was one of the top 1-3 girls in the training sessions. She is a very talented player and I am glad they put her on the age appropriate team to get a sense of where she stands. Why don't we let her continue to develop on the path she and her parents decided is right for her. For the future of US womens soccer I hope she develops into the best player in the world.
 
I am not sure why you are so upset about OM...did she do something directly to you?

I have had the pleasure of watching her train numerous times with top level (D1 college) 99/00 aged girls. She more than holds her own over the course of a 2 hour practice even though she was giving up 3-5 inches and 20-40 lbs on many of these athletes. In fact, I would argue she was one of the top 1-3 girls in the training sessions. She is a very talented player and I am glad they put her on the age appropriate team to get a sense of where she stands. Why don't we let her continue to develop on the path she and her parents decided is right for her. For the future of US womens soccer I hope she develops into the best player in the world.
"...hope..."
 
I'm sure Nike is happy with how they spent their money, given the unprecedented publicity. However, consider what could have been done for that money had it been spent to pump up training programs for a team, not just a single player. Let's say a set of youth teams, loosely based on international age boundaries (U-20 and below), one team for each of the USYSA regions, with all travel, room, and board costs covered for every player (and a fund available for parents who can't afford to support their end).
 
I'm sure Nike is happy with how they spent their money, given the unprecedented publicity. However, consider what could have been done for that money had it been spent to pump up training programs for a team, not just a single player. Let's say a set of youth teams, loosely based on international age boundaries (U-20 and below), one team for each of the USYSA regions, with all travel, room, and board costs covered for every player (and a fund available for parents who can't afford to support their end).
Because that would be good for soccer not necessarily Nike. At the end of the day it will all come out in the wash. You get everyone excited about Freddy Adu and then the Christian Pulisics and Wes McKinnies come along who actually get there by following the process and grinding.

Who knows she might become Lindsey Horan or she could be Freddy Adu. Most likely is something in the middle like a Mal Pugh. A talented player that was pushed onto the national team too early.

I wish her luck.
 
When you know ahead of time that the 20/100 picked will all be DA it’s all politics, not just a little. If they are transparent about it as someone in a previous post indicated they are, then it’s all good because we are all on notice with respect to making a US national team.

Now if you’re a regular sports fan with no dd’s in the game and you find out there were a couple of super studs that didn’t get picked because of these politics then you might get pissed off at US Soccer. But for the rest of us we all know what we’re getting into, just don’t try to convince me there’s nothing rigged with a roulette table that comes up red 100x in a row.
I don't think it is politics as much as strategy.

After 10 years of boys DA, US Soccer is starting to reap the benefits with an historically strong U20 team of 100% soccer professionals who look capable of materially changing the competitiveness of US soccer by the 2026 world cup. Despite the whining and hand wringing about DA over the years, it has fulfilled it's primary purpose which was to develop top players and create a pyramid where US Soccer can efficiently identify those players.

Girls DA was presumably set up with the same objectives in mind. A league like ECNL, while really successful and the home to lots of top girls, acts counter to that objective. ECNL makes identifying the top girls more difficult, not less difficult. Why would US Soccer want to support ECNL if it acts counter to it's mission?

Sure, ECNL has at least a bunch of girls who would rank among the top players today. But by offering those players spots US Soccer is essentially sanctioning ECNL as a top league and creating a less efficient ID mechanism for itself. If DA is successful, and it appears it will be, there will be fewer and fewer top players in ECNL over the next 5 years and there will be much less debate about why US Soccer select only DA players for the national teams, just like there is very little debate on the boys side.
 
I think it's pretty clear -- If you have Youth National Team aspirations- You need to play DA.
The chances of making a YNT are pretty slim. As stated above, there are probably a few hundred girls in each age group that can play at that level. Selecting the best 20-30 is not easy. Politics, luck, etc will have a lot to do with who gets picked.
No proof here, but here's a likely example:
2 players play the same position. Both are excellent players. 1 of them has been in the DA for 2 years. Her coach is a loyal US Soccer supporter. The other played ECNL last year and just joined the DA this year. Her coach is a known a-hole. And her club gives US Soccer a hard time all the time.
Who do you think they are going to select?
 
I don't think it is politics as much as strategy.

After 10 years of boys DA, US Soccer is starting to reap the benefits with an historically strong U20 team of 100% soccer professionals who look capable of materially changing the competitiveness of US soccer by the 2026 world cup. Despite the whining and hand wringing about DA over the years, it has fulfilled it's primary purpose which was to develop top players and create a pyramid where US Soccer can efficiently identify those players.

Girls DA was presumably set up with the same objectives in mind. A league like ECNL, while really successful and the home to lots of top girls, acts counter to that objective. ECNL makes identifying the top girls more difficult, not less difficult. Why would US Soccer want to support ECNL if it acts counter to it's mission?

Sure, ECNL has at least a bunch of girls who would rank among the top players today. But by offering those players spots US Soccer is essentially sanctioning ECNL as a top league and creating a less efficient ID mechanism for itself. If DA is successful, and it appears it will be, there will be fewer and fewer top players in ECNL over the next 5 years and there will be much less debate about why US Soccer select only DA players for the national teams, just like there is very little debate on the boys side.
It took 10+ years on the boys side to get a good U-20 team. How good would that U-20 team have been without the DA intrusion?
 

MarkM

SILVER ELITE
It took 10+ years on the boys side to get a good U-20 team. How good would that U-20 team have been without the DA intrusion?
Adams and Sargent didn't even suit up. McKennie and Pulsic are only a few months out of this group. There are a ton of other young promising players that DA programs have been placing abroad, including those that played with the U20s. You can keep your head in the sand, but the depth of young American talent has rapidly increased. You can also argue that DA doesn't work for girls, but DA gives boys a semblance of a professional pipeline that is starting to payoff.
 

outside!

PREMIER
Most likely is something in the middle like a Mal Pugh. A talented player that was pushed onto the national team too early.
I don't believe she went to the Women's National Team too early. She scored goals in the Olympics and the World Cup. She can play at the level of the WNT and will develop more by playing professionally and on the WNT than she ever would playing in college. UCLA is a great team, but they are not at the level of the WNT (although they might be close if they played the same competition).
 
Adams and Sargent didn't even suit up. McKennie and Pulsic are only a few months out of this group. There are a ton of other young promising players that DA programs have been placing abroad, including those that played with the U20s. You can keep your head in the sand, but the depth of young American talent has rapidly increased. You can also argue that DA doesn't work for girls, but DA gives boys a semblance of a professional pipeline that is starting to payoff.
"...DA programs have been placing abroad..."

Tell us more.
 
I don't believe she went to the Women's National Team too early. She scored goals in the Olympics and the World Cup. She can play at the level of the WNT and will develop more by playing professionally and on the WNT than she ever would playing in college. UCLA is a great team, but they are not at the level of the WNT (although they might be close if they played the same competition).
Has she developed? I can tell you that Fleming is a better player now than she was 3 years ago post World Cup and Olympics. Your daughter could have scored against Thailand there striker wasn’t even a regular starter at Cal. She is only on the team because of marketing. How many NWSL goals has she scored? Have you ever asked yourself why she really is on the team? Look at her stats after two full seasons (and part of a third). The actual numbers will mess with your head.

Hell what has Alex Morgan done recently in the pros. The US has the advantage that the talent pool is so deep that getting the best players doesn’t matter as long as you get most of them right.
 

MarkM

SILVER ELITE
"...DA programs have been placing abroad..."

Tell us more.
The DA is not a professional league - duh. They are moving to top tier pro teams abroad. If I said they were all over the MLS, you would have crapped on MLS. Kids were not having the early success abroad as they are now - certainly not in the numbers were are seeing. If you want to add some information, please do. Otherwise, can I borrow your time machine?
 
The DA is not a professional league - duh. They are moving to top tier pro teams abroad. If I said they were all over the MLS, you would have crapped on MLS. Kids were not having the early success abroad as they are now - certainly not in the numbers were are seeing. If you want to add some information, please do. Otherwise, can I borrow your time machine?
I was looking for more info on your "placing" inference.
 
It wasn't an inference; it was a statement. Look it up. And look up the word inference so you know how to use it correctly.
You posted it. You look it up.

Swap "inference" for "implication", if you must (although the meaning seems to have gotten across). Start from there.
 
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