Aug 24, 2012

McLean Youth Soccer's Junior Flores named to U-17 Men's National Team Residency Program

Local youth player Junior Flores of McLean Youth Soccer and Manassas Park,Va. has been named to the U-17 Residency Program.

CHICAGO (Aug. 24, 2012) - The roster for the U.S. Under-17 Men's National Team Residency Program was finalized for the 2012 Fall Semester, with 31 players selected to train full-time in Bradenton, Fla. Under the guidance of head coach Richie Williams, the players are in preparation for the 2013 CONCACAF U-17 Championship from April 6-19 in Panama. The CONCACAF U-17 Championship serves as the regional qualifying tournament for the 2013 FIFA U-17 World Cup.

Eleven new players join the roster for the semester including four born in 1997: Sebastian Elney, Malcolm Jones, Peter Schropp and Ben Swanson. In total, six players were born in 1997, while the remaining 25 were born in 1996.

Twenty players return from the previous semester, including a trio of players representing the New York Red Bulls Academy. Evan Louro, Christopher Lema and Wesley Wade all helped the Red Bulls U-15/16 team win the Development Academy championship in July.

"We think we've assembled a very strong roster and we look forward to working with all the players coming back and the new players coming in this semester," U-17 MNT head coach Richie Williams said. "We hope to continue to develop the players both individually and collectively so we can be successful on the field."

The roster also features 28 players from a 40-player camp held in late July at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., and 20 players from the 24-player roster that traveled to Costa Rica for the Copa Saprissa Internacional tournament at the end of June. The U.S. placed second in that competition.

There are 24 players representing 19 Development Academy clubs, including three each from Chivas USA and the New York Red Bulls, while California is listed as the home state for 12 of the 31 players.

The U.S. players live on campus at the IMG Academies in Bradenton and train in the morning under the guidance of Williams and his coaching staff. In the afternoon, the players attend classes at St. Stephen's Episcopal School.

While in the full-time Residency Program, the U.S. team not only trains daily, but also has access to the IMG Academies facilities. The team regularly uses the state-of-the-art strength-training facilities, as well as brand new dormitories and meal rooms.

Beginning in 1999, the Residency Program has given players an opportunity to grow and move up the ladder in the world of soccer and become professionals in Major League Soccer, some of the biggest clubs in Europe and even make an impact on the full U.S. Men's National Team. The program in Bradenton provides players with an environment where they can prosper as individual players and come together as a team ahead of regional and world competition.

Since its inception, more than 300 players have been through the full-time Residency Program, and more than 100 of those players have moved on to Major League Soccer or the professional leagues in Europe. Twenty-four players have also registered at least one cap with the full MNT: Freddy Adu, Gale Agbossoumonde, Juan Agudelo, Jozy Altidore, DaMarcus Beasley, Kyle Beckerman, Michael Bradley, Bobby Convey, Landon Donovan, Eddie Gaven, Omar Gonzalez, Eddie Johnson, Eric Lichaj, Justin Mapp, Chad Marshall, Dax McCarty, Oguchi Onyewu, Heath Pearce, Santino Quaranta, Robbie Rogers, Brek Shea, Jonathan Spector, Danny Szetela and Anthony Wallace.