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ASA Youth Academy

2018 - 2019



MISSION: To promote holistic player development over team development through a child-centered environment during the most the key developmental window.


WHY: The purpose is to increase player enjoyment, player retention, and improve the quality of soccer player developing throughout the state


  • Focus on the holistic development of each player
  • Reduce the emphasis on players and coaches to earn results

WHEN: Fall 2018 - Spring of 2019 seasons


WHAT is an Academy - a format that places all players within an age group or similar age groups into a “Pool” instead of teams.  Within the pool players train together in a player-centered environment, following a developmentally appropriate curriculum, and form teams for games.  Coaches place each player onto the developmentally appropriate team for each play date. Easy movement between teams gives coaches the opportunity to place each player into an optimal development environment in the game setting.


WHO: Clubs/associations must complete the application and be accepted to participate. Clubs/associations are reviewed annually for acceptance into the program. The players will combine two birth years for players to be able to play up and down one year. More importantly, the goal is to provide a wider range developmental abilities thus helping players find developmentally appropriate learning opportunities.

  • 2008 Birth Year - 11 and under
  • 2009 Birth Year - 10 and under
  • 2010 Birth Year – 9 and under


  • $300 per club application fee (valid for one year for both fall and spring seasons 2018-2019).
  • $650 application fee for a club/association that does not meet the standard of having a YAD with the National Youth License/Coaching Certificate or the new USSF “D” License.  $350 of the fee will go towards 1 registration in the next D License. All coaches have one year to in-person age appropriate?
  • $26 Player Fee
  • $100 for Fall Academy Cup (per team) 1 events
  • $100 for Spring Academy Cup (per team) 1 event


ASA will take over the main scheduling processes to eliminate the challenges faced by clubs. ASA will schedule a minimum number of games per team, per month, and create appropriate matchups. Clubs will submit their full academy team list by gender, age, and competitive level by the announced date: TBD.


ASA will formulate competitively appropriate divisions and schedules based on submissions. No leagues standings will be published, but clubs need to pay attention to scores to determine if matchups are appropriate

Clubs may schedule as needed outside of ASA scheduled games like before but are in charge of securing referees, fields, etc.  Roster flexibility will be maintained so players can move freely while they develop during the calendar year.



Academy Players must to learn how to compete, but to not judge their success merely on results (wins/losses). Therefore, it is important that we provide standards for matches that create Optimal Development Environments and includes player, parent, coach, and referee interaction.

Basic Rules:

  • Will follow all US Soccer Player Development Initiatives, including 7v7 and the build-out line for 9U/10U and 9v9 for 11U
  • No scores will be kept/published
  • Each player will be guaranteed at least one half of playing time per match (preferably more)
  • Players may not participate in more than 100 minutes each day.
  • Players may participate in a maximum of 30 matches per season, but must train in at least twice as many sessions than matches (this includes tournaments and showcases). For instance, if a group only plays in 12 matches, that is ok, and they must train at least 24 times. The YAD for each club is responsible for tracking and reporting as needed.
  • Games should occur on weekends as often as possible to maintain an emphasis on training sessions.  

Creating Optimal Development Environments

The challenge ahead of all Academy participants to create Optimal Development Environments that efficiently, effectively, and holistically develop all of our youth players throughout the state requires the following:

  • Competitive score-lines - 3 or more goal separation in the final result reflects an inappropriate matchup.  Contingency plans must be enacted in these situations.
  • Both teams clearly attempting to execute soccer-specific player actions and and US Soccer’s Key Qualities of a player - See appendix
  • Adverse opportunities to respond to and overcome. Ex: Goals scored against & referee mistakes
  • Balanced combination of support, demand, and teaching from coaches
  • Balanced combination of support from parents, guardians, and spectators
  • Collaborative effort between opposing coaches to solve non-competitive matchups. Ex. Putting an additional player onto the field for the team losing (do not take players off of the field)
  • Providing the winning team with a challenge to overcome (EX. playing back to the goalkeeper before going forward)



Players will be entered into the pool from Assessments/Evaluations rather than “Tryouts”

STANDARDS for Youth Academy Members

The focus for the ASA Youth Academy is on the training environment rather than on matches or tournaments. The training grounds are where great teachers can help further the holistic development of each player in an environment that encourages players to make mistakes.


YOUTH ACADEMY DIRECTOR - each member club/association must have an ASA Youth Academy Director who acts as the liaison between the local academy and the ASA Youth Soccer Academy Committee.  YAD must possess one or a combination of the following:

  1. The new USSF D License (2018)
  2. The National Youth Coaching License/ Certificate from US Youth Soccer


CURRICULUM- member Club/Associations must submit a curriculum for each year. Assistance in curriculum planning is available to all ASA members. The benefits of having a well-planned and progressive curriculum are many fold:

  1. Provides clear objectives for player development and a pathway to get there
  2. Gives the club identity, branding, and a key selling point
  3. Thorough educational experience for the players that graduates a ‘complete’ athlete/person
  4. Coaching staff works collectively rather than a bunch of individual coaches with a blueprint for training
  5. Easier to monitor and assess effectiveness of programs
  6. Keeps administrators and parents from interfering with technical issues


Curriculum Standards

  • Should include physical literacy and the ADM/LTDM on the Academy Landing Page
  • Should include the club’s style of play or Game Model
  • Should include basic skill sets that the club wants players to have accomplished by the end of each season: Technical/Tactical/Physical/Psychological
  • Can include example training sessions/staple activities
  • The curriculum must be posted to the club’s website.
  • Will be reviewed by ASA Technical Director and Committee.



Sessions should follow the club approved and published curriculum which, at its center is a Long Term Player Development Model. Play-Practice-Play methodology is strongly encouraged as a means to develop players holistically and to increase enjoyment.


Goalkeeping will also be a major training component as all players should learn how to play the GK position. ASA will assist in providing goalkeeper coaches clinics upon request. Additionally, ASA offers goalkeeper training through the EPD Program.



The ideal academy coach should, first and foremost, be one who loves to work with young children and who possess charisma. Infectious enthusiasm is a strong asset with players this age, since inspiring a passion and love for the game is the number one priority at the academy level. It must be fun for both the players and the coach. This is not a job for anyone who regards working with young players as a chore.

Each Youth Academy Coach must possess the appropriate game model USSF Grassroots Course (7v7 or 9v9) within 1 year.  ?YAD must ensure that all coaches meet the proper standards.



  • Associations should host at least 2 Parent Education/Interactions per season.
  • Players must receive at least 1 formal evaluation annually.  Example evaluations available upon request