06 Dec id2, PDPs continue to serve youth soccer through inclusivity and cost-free scouting, participation
Editor’s note for above photo: Christian Pulisic (front, left) and several other future professionals participate in warmups during 2012 id2 National Selection International Tour in Spain.
As the id2 Training Camp in Arizona begins, US Club Soccer wants to remind its members about the founding principles and core values of its identification and development initiatives: the id2 Program and Player Development Programs (PDPs).
The id2 Program was founded in 2004, and PDPs also entered the youth soccer landscape shortly thereafter. While the programs have evolved and expanded since their inception, the founding principles have remained the same:
- There is no cost to players to be identified or participate.
- For id2 Training Camps, all lodging, meals and training gear are provided at no cost by US Club Soccer and Nike. For id2 National Selection programming, airfare/travel is also provided at no cost.
- id2 and PDPs are open to all players regardless of U.S. Soccer affiliation or lack thereof.
- Players should initially be scouted within the environment they are most comfortable – their club training and competition environment. Clubs have the largest impact on player development, and club coaches and club competitions must be an integral part of the id2 Program.
- Players are rated and evaluated for inclusion based on a combination of objective and independent scouting information, as well as information from the players’ regular trainers and coaches.
- id2 and PDPs do not create significant, additional demands on the calendar of elite players.
This model – specifically a cost-free structure and emphasis on scouting, not applications – has identified and developed thousands of players. Hundreds of those players have progressed, and are continuing in their budding soccer careers, to the highest levels of the sport, including U.S. Soccer senior national teams and youth national teams and Division I collegiate programs.
Notable id2 and PDP alumni include: Christian Pulisic (USMNT & Borussia Dortmund), Tyler Adams (USMNT & RP Leipzig), Timothy Weah (USMNT & Paris Saint-Germain), DeAndre Yedlin (USMNT & Newcastle United), Greg Garza (USMNT & Atlanta United), Jonathan González (Mexican National Team & Monterrey), Corey Baird (Real Salt Lake), Rachael Dorwart (University of North Carolina), Laurel Ivory (University of Virginia), Catarina Macario (Stanford University), Jordan Harr (Texas Tech), Taylor Ziemer (University of Virginia) and Kelsey Turnbow (Santa Clara University).
It’s important to note that there are no prerequisites for participation in id2 or PDPs. Players don’t need to be a member of a specific governing body or have participated in certain events. Any club’s Director of Coaching is able to recommend players with national team potential for inclusion of an id2 Training Camp. These recommendations from coaches throughout the country are a key component of the id2 Program, along with scouting from PDPs, that supplement US Club Soccer’s objective scouting process that utilizes a network of scouts at games, tournaments and other high-level events across the country. US Club Soccer scouting encompasses all of youth soccer at the targeted age groups regardless of where a player is currently playing.
This national scouting and recommendation process is used to form a pool from which top players are invited to attend an id2 Training Camp. At the camps, players work with some of the nation’s best coaches, play with and against some of the nation’s best players in their age group, and are scouted by on-site U.S. Soccer staff. The directors of the id2 Program are Gerry McKeown (boys) and Tricia Taliaferro (girls).
Targeted birth years for id2 and PDPs are established every year in consultation with U.S. Soccer in order to align with the scouting priorities for boys and girls national teams. Both the id2 Program and PDPs are Olympic Development Programs approved by the United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Soccer Federation.
ABOUT US CLUB SOCCER:
A National Association member of the U.S. Soccer Federation, US Club Soccer fosters the growth and development of soccer clubs in order to create the best possible environment for players of all ages.
Anchored by Players First and its five pillars of Club Development, Coaching Development, Player Development, Parent Engagement & Education and Player Health & Safety, US Club Soccer offers registration, league- and cup-based competition platforms, player identification and a variety of other programming, resources and services.
US Club Soccer is sponsored by Nike and supported by LaLiga through a technical partnership.