Rise News

RISE Joins MLS NEXT Player Development Platform

RISE Joins MLS NEXT Player Development Platform

NEW YORK (May 13, 2020) – Major League Soccer today announced that 65 former U.S. Soccer Development Academy clubs will join the League’s existing club academies to create a partnership that will transform youth player development in the United States and Canada.

  • CLICK HERE for a full list of Founding Member clubs

The 65 youth clubs will join the MLS academies as Founding Members of MLS’ elite player development platform. The new platform, which will include more than 8,000 players throughout the U.S. and Canada, will consist of elite year-round competition, as well as player identification initiatives, coaching education opportunities, and additional programming to create the premier player development environment.

The platform will operate with a groundbreaking governance structure that promotes collaboration, innovation and input across all areas of the soccer landscape. Within the structure, technical working groups will provide recommendations on the platform’s strategic objectives and standards, outline competition guidelines and formats, as well as introduce platform programming. By unifying the elite player development landscape and creating a collaborative structure, the new platform will accelerate and enhance player development in North America.

With a focus on maximizing each player’s potential, the new development platform will not only provide high-level, year-round competition for players, but will provide important programming, education and innovation in the key areas of player development:

  • Player Identification
  • Coaching
  • Environment
  • Personal Growth
  • Community Outreach

RISE is proud to have been named a founding member club in the new MLS elite youth development platform.  As a club and an academy, we feel it is important for our top players to consistently play with and against the best players, teams and clubs in the country. We look forward to partnering with the other founding member clubs to create an unparalleled environment focused on player development and providing opportunities for the next generation of elite level players in the US.” – Jon Burklo, Academy Director.

Since launching the MLS club academy initiative in 2007, Major League Soccer has demonstrated unprecedented commitment to the development of top level professional players in the United States and Canada, including an investment of more than $70 million last season alone. This investment has produced more than 250 homegrown players that have become professional and national team players, including recent standout players such as Reggie Cannon (FC Dallas, Solar Soccer Club), James Sands (New York City FC academy, New York Soccer Club) and Matt Real (Philadelphia Union, FC Delco).

The elite academy clubs that are Founding Members of the new platform have also been leaders in the development of players for college, MLS and the national teams.  Combined, MLS Academies and the elite academies joining the platform have produced more than 90% of the U.S. Youth National Team players in the last year, making the new platform the top destination for the best young players in North America. With the launch of this new platform, MLS and the elite academy clubs will not only continue to develop world class players but will create a world class soccer development culture that supports and inspires elite players throughout the countries.

RISE will enter teams in the U12 (Pre-MLS), U13, U14, U15, U16/U17, and U18/U19 age groups. Through the generous donations of private individuals and our corporate sponsors, RISE will be funding our top U18/U19 boys and girls teams.

If you are interested in learning more about the Elite MLS Youth Development Platform or other RISE Soccer club programs please email Jon Burklo at jburklo@risesc.org.

Map of MLS NEXT Clubs across North America

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