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harrycoyster

General Discussion on Canadian Youth Teams

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Made a catch-all for CMNT youth teams and Canadian academy news.

Earlier today TFC officially joined the USSDA at all levels, joining the Whitecaps and the Impact. I talked to a friend within the Whitecaps youth system who told me that the move has been in the works for a while, but was dependent on the 2026 World Cup bid. He told me the CSA isn't thrilled with the situation (and the OSA is even less thrilled), as TFC joining the USSDA means Toronto must pay the USSF around $2000 USD a year in registration fees. The CSA has been attempting to build a Canadian answer to the USSDA, but with CPL academies still years away, it was decided that the CMLS teams competing in the USSDA is the best thing for development towards 2026, which has become the main focus of CSA youth strategy. The USSDA has a significant fee for leaving to join a competing youth league within 3.5 years of joining, so it appears TFC will play in the USSDA until at least 2022.

Additionally, everybody who cares about the next generation should keep an eye on the USSDA Summer Showcase currently taking place in the US. Outside of the Dallas Cup, it is the most heavily scouted youth tournament that CMLS teams compete in, and regularly ends with 4-5 players earning moves to European academies. Unfortunately, the #4 seeded Impact u18s dropped its first game the the #27 seed LA Galaxy u18s in a 0-4 loss that illustrated what people that regularly follow the USSDA already know; the Western USSDA divisions are far superior to the Central and Eastern divisions. 

Edited by harrycoyster

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Guest Tg11

If this USSDA helps with development then hey I am all for it personally because if it helps pick out the best and brightest stars who could one day feature for Canada then that of course is great as we gear towards 2022 and 2026 anyway.

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46 minutes ago, harrycoyster said:

Made a catch-all for CMNT youth teams and Canadian academy news.

Earlier today TFC officially joined the USSDA at all levels, joining the Whitecaps and the Impact. I talked to a friend within the Whitecaps youth system who told me that the move has been in the works for a while, but was dependent on the 2026 World Cup bid. He told me the CSA isn't thrilled with the situation (and the OSA is even less thrilled), as TFC joining the USSDA means Toronto must pay the USSF around $2000 USD a year in registration fees. The CSA has been attempting to build a Canadian answer to the USSDA, but with CPL academies still years away, it was decided that the CMLS teams competing in the USSDA is the best thing for development towards 2026, which has become the main focus of CSA youth strategy. The USSDA has a significant fee for leaving to join a competing youth league within 3.5 years of joining, so it appears TFC will play in the USSDA until at least 2022.

Additionally, everybody who cares about the next generation should keep an eye on the USSDA Summer Showcase currently taking place in the US. Outside of the Dallas Cup, it is the most heavily scouted youth tournament that CMLS teams compete in, and regularly ends with 4-5 players earning moves to European academies. Unfortunately, the #4 seeded Impact u18s dropped its first game the the #27 seed LA Galaxy u18s in a 0-4 loss that illustrated what people that regularly follow the USSDA already know; the Western USSDA divisions are far superior to the Central and Eastern divisions. 

Cool topic and it's a hit on CPL/CSA overall, but perhaps the future will add all three CMLS teams in the youth tourneys set in Canada. However with scouts coming to these games perhaps the brightest players in CMLS teams will get a higher chance at joining a European academies. Let see how it goes for TFC since they are just joining now.

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I understand the short term benefits of playing in USSDA, but I am disappointed that it’s happening. I wanted Vancouver and Montreal to shift towards Canadian leagues, not for TFC to shift away. I think this move hurts TFC’s capacity for scouting young Canadians, and decreases the level of competition in the OPDL.

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20 hours ago, harrycoyster said:

Made a catch-all for CMNT youth teams and Canadian academy news.

Earlier today TFC officially joined the USSDA at all levels, joining the Whitecaps and the Impact. I talked to a friend within the Whitecaps youth system who told me that the move has been in the works for a while, but was dependent on the 2026 World Cup bid. He told me the CSA isn't thrilled with the situation (and the OSA is even less thrilled), as TFC joining the USSDA means Toronto must pay the USSF around $2000 USD a year in registration fees. The CSA has been attempting to build a Canadian answer to the USSDA, but with CPL academies still years away, it was decided that the CMLS teams competing in the USSDA is the best thing for development towards 2026, which has become the main focus of CSA youth strategy. The USSDA has a significant fee for leaving to join a competing youth league within 3.5 years of joining, so it appears TFC will play in the USSDA until at least 2022.

Additionally, everybody who cares about the next generation should keep an eye on the USSDA Summer Showcase currently taking place in the US. Outside of the Dallas Cup, it is the most heavily scouted youth tournament that CMLS teams compete in, and regularly ends with 4-5 players earning moves to European academies. Unfortunately, the #4 seeded Impact u18s dropped its first game the the #27 seed LA Galaxy u18s in a 0-4 loss that illustrated what people that regularly follow the USSDA already know; the Western USSDA divisions are far superior to the Central and Eastern divisions. 

Ok...

If it's for the ultimate interest of Canadian soccer due to lack of alternative than I'm for it.

However...

When the day come where a Canadian equivalent gets established, they have no business there. Just my 2 cents.

Edited by Ansem

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#7 ranked Impact u17s defeat the #30 Rapids 3-1. #10 Whitecaps u17s fall 0-1 to #19 Barca Arizona. Impact scorers were Omeonga, Calaidjoglu, Pacius. Missed opportunity for the Whitecaps, who were playing in front of a number of Barcelona and Liga MX scouts.

In the Supercopa, the tournament for the best teams not in the actual showcase, Toronto FC's u17s were defeated by DC United's u17s 4-1.

Edited by harrycoyster

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8 minutes ago, harrycoyster said:

Missed opportunity for the Whitecaps, who were playing in front of a number of Barcelona and Liga MX scouts.

The team doesn't necessarily need to be successful for the top prospects to shine for scouts.

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1 minute ago, jpg75 said:

The team doesn't necessarily need to be successful for the top prospects to shine for scouts.

The Caps had a single shot on target. So, if any of our kids did shine they were defenders. On the bright side, Barca Arizona is crazy talented and started what are likely to be two US u20 defenders. Just playing this level of competition is good for our players, as they don't face anywhere near that level of technical play in the Northwest division.

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On 6/18/2018 at 9:43 PM, harrycoyster said:

#10 seed Whitecaps u18s drop the #21 Revs 5-1. Hat-trick for Theo Bair and a hat-trick of assists from Georges Mukombilwa. Hasal with a number of quality saves.

How would you rate Theo Bair as a prospect for the CMNT and the Whitecaps? From what I saw at Toulon he seems like a physical freak (big, fast, strong).

Edited by HochelagaFC

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1 minute ago, HochelagaFC said:

How would you rate Theo Bair as a prospect for the CMNT and the Whitecaps? From what I saw at Toulon he seems like a physical freak (big, fast, strong).

I say he looks good but he is young of course but does he have what it takes to make the Whitecaps squad on a full time basis? If he keeps this up, he can break into the team easily. Now as far as him making the Canada national team right now we need all the scoring threats we are gonna get especially with the 2019 Gold Cup qualifiers to worry about.

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28 minutes ago, HochelagaFC said:

How would you rate Theo Bair as a prospect for the CMNT and the Whitecaps? From what I saw at Toulon he seems like a physical freak (big, fast, strong).

Big, fast, strong is a good starter. He uses his size well, which allows him to dominate his age group. The technical ability isn’t there yet, and I’m not sure he’ll ever be able to handle the ball in tight spaces, but he’s got the physical tools and puts the ball in the net pretty consistently. Tesho Akindele was a pretty similar player as a u20, but I think Bair’s finishing ability is already better than Akindele’s ever was. As was the case with Akindele and is currently the case with Akinola, the question is will his athleticism still be a major strength at the next level or will he struggle against pro athletes. Hard to tell until it happens.

 

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26 minutes ago, harrycoyster said:

The Caps had a single shot on target. So, if any of our kids did shine they were defenders. On the bright side, Barca Arizona is crazy talented and started what are likely to be two US u20 defenders. Just playing this level of competition is good for our players, as they don't face anywhere near that level of technical play in the Northwest division.

Weird, isn't that the same vaunted Whitecaps U17's you said were among the best teams in USSDA?

 

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16 minutes ago, Bison44 said:

How about Hernandez? The kid from Edmonton, he has a ton of goals, was on the U-17 team in panama.  

Has a ton of tools, but I’m always skeptical of young players that don’t have a defined position at the pro level. He isn’t a transcendent dribbler and isn’t terribly big or fast.

Legit pro prospect though.

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7 minutes ago, jpg75 said:

Weird, isn't that the same vaunted Whitecaps U17's you said were among the best teams in USSDA?

 

They still are. They've struggled with injuries and still finished tied for the third most wins in the whole USSDA. Right now they are playing in enemy territory and lost by a goal to a bonafide top 10 team that may very well be sending two players to La Masia.

Also, at the youth levels the preparation matters a lot. I'm sure the long-balling Sounders, Xfire, and Timbers have not adequately prepared the Baby Caps for a team filled with Barcelona coached Mexican-Americans.

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8 hours ago, harrycoyster said:

Has a ton of tools, but I’m always skeptical of young players that don’t have a defined position at the pro level. He isn’t a transcendent dribbler and isn’t terribly big or fast.

Legit pro prospect though.

 

If he is then that's great because the more offensive threats we have in the Canadian program the better.

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8 hours ago, harrycoyster said:

Big, fast, strong is a good starter. He uses his size well, which allows him to dominate his age group. The technical ability isn’t there yet, and I’m not sure he’ll ever be able to handle the ball in tight spaces, but he’s got the physical tools and puts the ball in the net pretty consistently. Tesho Akindele was a pretty similar player as a u20, but I think Bair’s finishing ability is already better than Akindele’s ever was. As was the case with Akindele and is currently the case with Akinola, the question is will his athleticism still be a major strength at the next level or will he struggle against pro athletes. Hard to tell until it happens.

 

Then he definitely still needs time to develop and the more he works on the part of his game that hinders him right now, then down the road he can be a player for the future as far as the national team.

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While it's not a surprising move my TFC, I think this is a disappointing move. It's a cop out, in my mind; TFC are bailing on the Canadian development system under the guise that US talent at that age is far superior.

There is something about Canadian culture where people feel Canadian product is inferior to American product (outside of perhaps beer and hockey), and soccer is no exception. I believe that Canadian soccer needs to fully detach itself from the US pyramid. While this isn't realistic for MLS clubs, nor is it a great idea, I would prefer to not see a single Canadian club in an American league outside of MLS. 

We need to get over the mindset that the US is this great bastion of talent that we need to prove ourselves against. This move, combined with a recent article on Northern Starting XI about how KW United dissolved due to their belief that PDL is a far superior product to League1 Ontario (among other reasons) falls right into that mindset. There is a lot of good talent in this country, that is just now getting the exposure. 

Using PDL as an example, having watched the league heavily over the last 4 years, I do not believe it is as great a development league as is touted given the short season, highly condensed schedule, and the fact that many American clubs don't actually bring some of their best players to Canada given the fact that they can't enter the country.

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3 hours ago, shermanator said:

While it's not a surprising move my TFC, I think this is a disappointing move. It's a cop out, in my mind; TFC are bailing on the Canadian development system under the guise that US talent at that age is far superior.

There is something about Canadian culture where people feel Canadian product is inferior to American product (outside of perhaps beer and hockey), and soccer is no exception. I believe that Canadian soccer needs to fully detach itself from the US pyramid. While this isn't realistic for MLS clubs, nor is it a great idea, I would prefer to not see a single Canadian club in an American league outside of MLS. 

We need to get over the mindset that the US is this great bastion of talent that we need to prove ourselves against. This move, combined with a recent article on Northern Starting XI about how KW United dissolved due to their belief that PDL is a far superior product to League1 Ontario (among other reasons) falls right into that mindset. There is a lot of good talent in this country, that is just now getting the exposure. 

Using PDL as an example, having watched the league heavily over the last 4 years, I do not believe it is as great a development league as is touted given the short season, highly condensed schedule, and the fact that many American clubs don't actually bring some of their best players to Canada given the fact that they can't enter the country.

I know very little of the PDL/L1O situation. But the USSDA is far superior to the regional Canadian development systems. That is largely due to the lack of pro clubs and funded academies and not because the American athlete is somehow superior. However, the USSDA has made it so that American talent is far more centralized than it is in the majority of Canada. If there are 30 great 15 year old soccer players in Upper Washington, 20-25 of them are probably on the Crossfire or Sounders. If there are 30 great 15 year old soccer players in Western Ontario, they probably play on 10+ teams. The quality of teams as a whole is definitively worse, even though the level of talent is similar.

So when it comes to finding competition for our high level youth teams, the USSDA is the obvious choice until the CSA can build a Canadian alternative (which won't be easy given the power and stubbornness of the provincial associations). 

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I think the division they get placed in will matter too. If they end in the Northeast with Montreal, NYCFC and New England they may as well stick in OPDL playing up an age group. But if they go into Mid-America with Crew, Chicago Fire and Sockers (Chicago) then it'll probably be worth it.

edit: TFC III are in L1O now. Actually probably not an improvement going into USSDA at that age, but it's all or nothing i believe.

Edited by jpg75

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1 hour ago, harrycoyster said:

I know very little of the PDL/L1O situation. But the USSDA is far superior to the regional Canadian development systems. That is largely due to the lack of pro clubs and funded academies and not because the American athlete is somehow superior. However, the USSDA has made it so that American talent is far more centralized than it is in the majority of Canada. If there are 30 great 15 year old soccer players in Upper Washington, 20-25 of them are probably on the Crossfire or Sounders. If there are 30 great 15 year old soccer players in Western Ontario, they probably play on 10+ teams. The quality of teams as a whole is definitively worse, even though the level of talent is similar.

So when it comes to finding competition for our high level youth teams, the USSDA is the obvious choice until the CSA can build a Canadian alternative (which won't be easy given the power and stubbornness of the provincial associations). 

Well the American development system can help these players much more than the Canadian development system can. It will at least be able to help them develop the right way as players.

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