The Crew Soccer Academy announced today that it will face the United States U-17 Men’s national Team on Monday, September 10, at Ohio State’s Jesse Owens Stadium at 7 p.m. The match will be free and open to the public, and will feature members of the U-17 residency program, including CSA standout Benny Swanson who just recently joined the program.
“We are extremely excited to host the U-17 Men's National Team for the second time in three years,” said Crew Senior Vice President of Soccer Business Development, Andrew Arthurs. “That Ben Swanson will be playing for them and we are playing the day before the full National Team's World Cup Qualifier in Crew Stadium makes this opportunity even more special.”
The CSA team will be comprised of players from both the 15/16s and 17/18s teams, including forward and Hilliard native, Nate Kohl and 2011-12 U.S. Development Academy U-16 Goalkeeper of the Year Carter Richardson from Dublin, Ohio. Most recently, CSA participated in the 2012 Generation adidas Cup, a competition run by Major League Soccer for all MLS Academies. The 17/18s finished third in the tournament and Kohl captured the Golden Boot Award as top scorer by tallying six goals.
The U.S. U-17s will play one match prior to September 10, as it faces St. Louis Scott Gallagher on Sept. 8 in St. Louis, Mo. Head coach Richie Williams just announced the roster for the 2012 Residency Program, which is made up of the top young players in the country. Aside from 15-year old Swanson, who hails from Grove City, Ohio, the Crew is also represented by CSA Wolves forward Ahinga Selemani, from Detroit, Mich. The U.S. U-17 MNT will then travel to Spain at the end of September to face Azerbaijan, Georgia and the United Arab Emirates in the 2012 GSA Cup which runs from Sept. 29 through Oct. 6.
Crew Soccer Academy is the program that provides the greatest opportunity and exposure for players in the Ohio region to reach their highest level, and is one of the few programs in the country that is fully funded. CSA is a charter member of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy. Supported by the U.S. National Teams, it is the top level of youth competition in the country.
CSA is entering its sixth USSDA season, which begins in September and runs through June 2013. It has produced several players who went on to successful college careers including U.S. U-20 and University of Akron midfielder Wil Trapp, from Gahanna as well as current Crew Homegrown players Aaron Horton, from Powell, Hilliard’s Matt Lampson and Stow native Ben Speas.
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 gone on to stellar professional careers in the U.S. and Europe. Twenty-four players have also registered at least one cap with the full Men’s National Team, including Crew captain Chad Marshall and forward Eddie Gaven.