Two Columbus Crew SC Academy players will head to Frisco, Texas for the U.S. Soccer Youth National Team's Under-14 Talent Identification Central Region Mini-Camp from March 14-18, per a release today from the governing organization.
Josiah Benjamin and Giorgio De Libera will represent the Crew SC Academy in the mini-camp, which is one of three such mini-camps as part of the initial rollout of U.S. Soccer's new YNT U-14 TID program.
A majority of the players called into the Central mini-camp were identified at last fall’s Development Academy Central Regional Showcase and were further evaluated at YNT Identification Centers as part of the scouting process prior to being selected for this camp.
U.S. Soccer staff, including Director of TID Tony Lepore and the three boys’ TID Managers, Henry Brauner, Garrett Biller and Cris da Silva, will run the camp.
Regarding the camp's agenda, 80 players from the Central Region will make up 20-player teams based on the region’s four defined scouting areas (North Central, South Central, Midwest and Southeast). After a day of training, the four teams will play each other in round-robin competition.
As far as off-field aspects, players will be introduced to YNT principles of play, position profiles and goal-setting. Additionally, the players will be introduced to U.S. Soccer's High Performance department, in which a sport scientist will be on hand taking Peak Height Velocity (PHV) measurements to help educate players and coaches about the impact of growth and maturation on development, as well as best practices for nutrition and recovery.