In recent years, the love for soccer in America has taken an upward trend. Many young people in America are looking forward to becoming elite soccer players which is why a lot of soccer academies are springing up.
- A soccer academy scouts for young talents and nurtures them to become professional soccer players
- Only a small percent of players that enroll in soccer academies become professional and highly famous
- Talent scouts will easily find you if you attend paid trials
- Hiring an agent is a shortcut to getting into a soccer academy
With an exception of just a few, most professional soccer players today all went through one or two soccer academies. Clubs have scouts that are always on the lookout for the next most talented youngster in the sport.
When such talents are spotted, they are quickly signed by academies for further training. So, what exactly are soccer academies, and why are they relevant?
A soccer academy is basically a training institute carefully designed to help young soccer players with proven potential develop properly into the sport. Being enrolled in a soccer academy doesn’t necessarily mean that you will progress into becoming a pro player.
The low number of academy players who progress into playing professionally shouldn’t discourage you from joining a soccer academy. Even if you don’t eventually make it to the big leagues, you can easily play for a domestic club.
Some academy players go on to become coaches themselves. Most big clubs all over the world have a soccer academy. Therefore, finding a soccer academy to enroll in should be relatively easy.
If you are reading this post, it is probably because you are interested in joining a soccer academy but unsure of how to start. We will give you a step-by-step guide on how to enter a soccer academy and what you should look out for.
- How to enter a soccer academy?
- Important things to note while enrolled in a soccer academy
- List of good soccer academies in the USA
How to enter a soccer academy?
Many young players get drafted into big clubs like Arsenal, Barcelona, and Manchester United yearly. This motivates ambitious soccer players into pushing harder with hopes that they might be the next big name in the sport.
Understanding how soccer academies operate will lessen your stress when looking for which one to join. Academies differ by country and clubs and they can either be day camps or full board.
In full-board soccer academies, players are mostly expected to live fully at the academy while in day camps, they come from home when needed. While attending soccer academies, players are expected to give priority to their education as well.
A lot of importance is placed on a player’s school results while in an academy. Some academies even go as far as expelling students with bad grades. At academies, things are organized in such a way that students can balance training, school, and their social life without burnout.
Training sessions also vary in different soccer academies but the goal of improving a player’s techniques, skills, and other physical attributes must be achieved. An academy is a place where every young soccer enthusiast must endeavor to enroll in.
Another thing you should also know about soccer academies is that oftentimes, they only take players between the age range of 9 to 16. If you are older than 16 or younger than 9, you might find it difficult to get into an academy.
If clubs discover raw talents, they wouldn’t mind enrolling them in an academy as long as they are still young enough to play competitively. There are numerous ways of joining an academy and we will share all of them below.
Signup for trial camps
This method can work for you if you are still within the age range of 9 to 15. Attending trial camps early enough is a smart move for young soccer players.
Some trial camps are free while some are paid. You stand a higher chance of being spotted by a scout when you participate in paid trial camps.
Talent scouts and soccer agents pay infrequent visits to trial camps—and usually don’t announce their presence. In such camps, if your skills are impressive enough, you might be contacted by such agents for possible placement in the academy they represent.
After completing your time at the academy, you can be called up to join the academy’s soccer club. This is the reason why you must put in your possible best while in trial camps.
Clubs like Arsenal FC usually place a higher priority on their academy players before considering signing players from other clubs. International soccer clubs like Bayern Munich, Barcelona, and Manchester United have produced great soccer players over these past years from their academies.
In places like California and Washington DC, you will find a vast array of soccer academies you can register with. Such academies combine professional soccer training with formal education to enable kids to become all-round achievers after their time at the academy.
Most soccer academies have websites and email addresses through which you can apply as a student. These channels make application easier than it used to be in the past when players needed to be physically present for registration at the academy.
While registering to become a soccer academy student, you must ensure that you fill in the correct details about yourself and make sure the required fee is readily available. Also, ensure that your intentions are clear enough on the application form.
You can also make use of the club’s youth development department. You will be invited for a trial if your application is accepted.
For example, players like Phil Foden and Marcus Rashford who are products of a youth development squad have gone to become very popular names in the world of soccer.
Try getting an official offer
To get an official offer, you would have to be present when club representatives visit your locality. Big clubs often send their representatives to street soccer tournaments in search of raw talents.
They don’t usually notify players when coming to such events so they would spot young players who are naturally passionate about the sport. By being present at such local soccer tournaments, you might just get lucky enough to be picked for academy training.
When you get selected, try not to quickly accept the terms you are offered without discussing it with your parents or guardian. To increase your chances of joining a soccer academy this way, always try to impress the audience when engaging in competitions.
Players who get selected into academies this way also stand higher chances of being offered a soccer scholarship by the club when they turn 16. This can only be possible if such players maintain the same tempo which got them noticed in the first place.
Get a good soccer agent
The world of soccer agents is controversial and finding the right agents can often be very difficult. Good agents should be able to actively search for the right academies for talented soccer players.
Agents are also responsible for the best interest of a soccer player which is why they are often placed in charge of signing any available contracts and making negotiations.
Parents often employ soccer agents for their talented kids because these agents can do the job better. Good agents often have lots of important soccer contacts who can help a soccer player get the best experience from joining a soccer academy.
Such agents can even go as far as inviting soccer scouts from big clubs to watch you play. When your agent helps you get signed into a big club, they also win.
Always try to record yourself while playing soccer because this way, you will have something to send to agents while seeking their service. If your videos are captivating, most agents will give you a positive reply.
Important things to note while enrolled in a soccer academy
Doing some of the things we will be talking about below will massively increase your chances of going pro after spending time at a soccer academy.
Know your strengths and weaknesses
Soccer is a sport where a lot of players aim for a position at the top. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses on the pitch will help you identify and choose roles that perfectly suit you.
Focusing on improving your strengths is a great way to sideline your weaknesses without allowing them to affect your delivery. This little action can help you stand out on the soccer pitch.
Set goals and break them
People who set goals always outperform those who live without setting goals. Goals help you stay focused as a soccer player—if you are disciplined enough to follow them through.
Keep working on your goals until you achieve them and always set bigger goals when you finally achieve your old goals. This is a secret to excelling in your soccer career.
Make daily improvements
While in a soccer academy, always try to make daily improvements on your own even on days when there isn’t any physical training. Your commitment to this habit will help you progress ahead of your teammates.
Soccer involves a lot of devotion, energy, and hard work so don’t just rely on the academy training routine if you want to excel.
Food plays an important role in your soccer career. It is easy to go in the direction of junk food when no one is watching. However, that can affect your performance.
For those that can afford it, employing the services of a dietician may not be a bad idea.
List of good soccer academies in the USA
To make things easier for you, we have compiled a list of reputable soccer academies in the USA.
- Chicago Soccer Academy in St. Charles, IL
- NYC Soccer Academy found in New York
- Universal Soccer Academy in Southampton Township, New Jersey
- Empire United Soccer Academy is located in Rochester, New York
- Five Star Soccer Academy is located in Oxford, Massachusetts
- The FC Barcelona High-Performance Academy in Arizona
- United Soccer Academy in Bound Brook, New Jersey
- Colo-Colo Soccer Academy USA is located in Boca Raton, FL
- Barca Residency Academy found in Casa Grande, AZ
- Paris Saint-Germain Academy in Miami, Florida
America is starting to become a soccer hotspot with an abundant stockpile of talents. We believe that with the increasing number of soccer academies in America, great players from this country will soon conquer the international soccer scene.
In no distant time, we foresee the American senior soccer team ranking among the top 5 in the world. We know this from observing the female soccer team in the country.
With the world-class facilities and coaches America has integrated into its soccer academies, the best time to join an academy if you have an interest in soccer is now.
Hi there, I’m Jay.
The Pitch is Ours is a new beginning for me and a stepping stone to prepare before retiring from the professional soccer team. Soccer is everything in my life! My friends and I have created this blog with all our enthusiasm, passion, and understanding after years of playing pro soccer. Hope you will enjoy it!