Youth partnership

Crew SC Player Development to partner with Classics Eagles, Ohio Premier SC in forming new youth development platform

Columbus Crew SC Player Development, the organization’s youth development program, today announced that in conjunction with local youth soccer organizations Classics Eagles and Ohio Premier SC, a new local player development platform for Under-8 and Under-9 boys and girls is being formed in the Columbus area for Spring 2015. This progressive platform is a collaborative partnership created by all three organizations.

Founded with shared values and aspirations of creating a truly player-centric environment focused on technical development, style of play, sportsmanship, high coaching and parental behavioral standards, the three organizations are coming together to form a unique platform that will serve Central Ohio.

"The Ohio Premier coaching staff is looking forward to this spring as we look to mirror what is going on in other youth soccer communities throughout the country," said Chris Baer, Ohio Premier SC's Executive Director. "Providing this environment for the U-8 and U-9 players in our club allows us to establish a strong foundation from which to build into the team building and competition phases."

The unique setup and partnership between the three organizations aims to mirror U.S. Soccer's standards in order to form a player-centric environment. According to U.S. Soccer, the measurement of success in Zone 1 is “improvement of ball skills, understanding of the rules of the game, playing fairly and learning general game principles.”

“This is certainly a positive development from a few perspectives,” said Andrew Arthurs, Crew SC Senior VP of Soccer Business Development. “The collaborative nature involved in working alongside local soccer leaders to help craft a unique player focused environment is a top priority. That this environment’s focus will be on mirroring U.S. Soccer’s specific recommendations for Zone 1 is exciting and will really benefit our soccer community for many years to come.”

In addition to the priority of current and future alignment with U.S. Soccer’s guidelines and standards, a critical founding philosophy is to build an inclusive platform to serve like-minded clubs and leaders across Central Ohio moving forward.

“The new platform will enable the clubs to implement a more consistent and effective youth soccer player development model, which is especially important at the younger age groups," said Mike Lentz, Classics Eagles Executive Director. "It’s essential that the training environment and game-day experiences be aligned across the clubs so all participants (players, coaches, spectators and referees) contribute in a positive and consistent way to each player’s individual skill development, game understanding and passion for the game of soccer. The Classics Eagles leadership and coaching staff are excited to move this model forward in cooperation with clubs that support these concepts."

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