id2 girls all-time Best XI features alumnae at the pinnacle of our sport
CHARLESTON, S.C. (Jan. 6, 2023) – US Club Soccer has named its id2 girls all-time Best XI, featuring several alumnae who have reached the pinnacle of our sport, having represented senior national teams. The list includes current stars of the U.S. Soccer Women’s National Team, as well as emerging standouts in this country and abroad.
Founded in 2004, US Club Soccer’s id2 National Identification and Development Program has been a fixture in youth soccer for nearly two decades. The id2 Program provides opportunities for elite athletes to be identified, developed and scouted for inclusion in U.S. Soccer’s youth national team programming. The selections for Best XI and substitutions include players who participated in id2 programming, including id2 Training Camps and the former ECNL/id2 National Training Camp.
“We’re so proud of these players for their success on and off the field,” said Tricia Taliaferro, id2 Girls Director. “Several of these athletes are household names in the soccer community, having already made impressions with the USWNT and within the NWSL, but you also see many players who are on the cusp of stardom. We’ll see many of them competing in the FIFA Women’s World Cup this summer, and we’re confident they’ll elevate their level of play with the opportunity.”
Six of these players were recently selected to the USWNT training camp in New Zealand later this month. The years in parentheses signify the year in which they participated in id2:
The id2 boys all-time Best XI was released prior to the FIFA Men’s World Cup, which featured seven id2 alumni in Qatar. The id2 Program is an Olympic Development Program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and the U.S. Soccer Federation. There is no cost for players to participate or be scouted, and all meals, lodging and gear are provided by US Club Soccer and Nike. All travel costs are provided at the id2 National Selection International Tour level. This approach to eliminating barriers to entry helps ensure the best players are able to participate.
Currently in the 2022-23 season, id2 programming is being held across the country. Twelve one-day id2 Selection events were held in the fall and winter, supplemented by various Player Development Programs (PDP). Those scouting efforts have now led to a pair of id2 National Training Camps, Jan. 13-15 and Feb. 3-5. The final element is the highly acclaimed id2 National Selection International Tour, which will span March 30-April 11 with a brief domestic camp in New Jersey, followed by an international trip to London and Manchester. The current age group cycle is boys and girls born in 2009. The age group is determined in coordination with U.S. Soccer’s youth national team scouting priorities. This allows the id2 Program to play a valuable role in a young player’s development, as he or she is exposed to a similar environment to U.S. Soccer youth national team camps and identified by id2 directors and coaches for those subsequent opportunities.
Here is the progression of id2 programming:
Scouting / invitation process
The id2 Program is invitation-only. id2 directors Gerry McKeown (boys) and Tricia Taliaferro (girls) lead scouting efforts through a multi-faceted process that includes scouting competitions themselves, receiving recommendations from Directors of Coaching, and consulting with a network of trusted scouts and coaches throughout the country for player leads.
id2 Selection events
id2 Selection events are one-day programs that include scouted, tactical training sessions and an 11v11 match. Regional leagues – like the National Premier Leagues member leagues – throughout the country co-host these events with US Club Soccer to facilitate a more comfortable scouting and developmental experience for players. Top performers are then invited to participate in id2 Training Camps. Typically, 30 boys and 30 girls players participate in id2 Selection events.
id2 Training Camps
id2 Training Camps are three-day regional identification and development camps, in which players – 36 boys and 36 girls – participate in a multi-faceted experience of training sessions and games, as well as off-the-field presentations and discussions. id2 directors lead the camps alongside a collection of top club coaches from around the country. Camps include carefully curated itineraries, balancing on-field training and scrimmages, classroom presentations, nutrition and recovery. Players receive evaluations from their camp coaches to help continue their developmental journeys in their club environments back home. id2 directors share player ratings and feedback with U.S. Soccer youth national team staff for potential invitations to future youth national team programming. Watch a “day in the life” of an id2 participant from a past training camp here.
id2 National Selection teams
The final programming element of each id2 cycle is the selection of id2 National Selection boys and girls teams. Selected players travel internationally to train with each other and compete against some of the world’s best academy teams. Numerous professional players are former id2 National Selection team members, including: Christian Pulisic, Lindsey Horan, Tim Weah, Catarina Macario and Tyler Adams.
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