For the USSF’s Development Academy, this weekend marks the end of 2012.
There are games all across the country this weekend, but it may be in the Pacific Northwest where the action is the hottest.
The Seattle Sounders host cross-town rival Crossfire Premier on Saturday, as the two clubs battle for positioning at the top of the U16 age group in the Northwest Division. On Sunday, Vancouver Whitecaps take on the Portland Timbers in a youth Cascadia Cup tilt. Both U18 teams are looking to keep the momentum that they built up from successful ends to the Showcase in Florida two weeks ago.
Elsewhere, there are a number of other noteworthy clashes in the top boy's club soccer league in the nation. Check out the brief highlights for what's in store this weekend:
New York Red Bulls, the top team in the Northeast Division, is in action this weekend with games against Oakwood Soccer Club on Saturday. The MLS academy’s U18 team remains undefeated on the season with a 9-0-3 record after some stiff competition in Florida.
In the Atlantic Division, Richmond Kickers have two important games this weekend with a road fixture against McLean Youth Soccer on Saturday, and then a home game against NJSA 04 on Sunday.
There are a handful of Texas clubs in action on Saturday with the matchup between Houston Dynamo and Solar Chelsea SC headlining the bill. Beyond the implications on standings, the Solar-Dynamo U18 clash is meaningful for Dallas Cup in 2013. According to a tournament official, Solar needs three points from the game to qualify for the Super Group and join the likes of Aalborg, Club America, and Tigres in the prestigious competition.
Dynamo U18’s attack has been rolling lately with 10 goals in its last three games, so it will be up to Solar CB Trevor Haberkorn and his cohorts to slow down that high powered offense.
FC Dallas U18 has a shot at returning to the top of the division with a win on Saturday against Texans SC Houston. With only four points from three games in the Florida event, FC Dallas dropped for its cozy spot at the top of the division earlier this month, but could be in line to bounce back with a strong showing over the weekend.
Beyond the Northwest games, there are still a few other contests worth mentioning from the West. On Saturday, De Anza Force hosts Real Salt Lake – Arizona in a non-division showdown. Both clubs sit in the top spot in the U16 age group for their respective divisions. U15 Boys National Team playmaker Sebastian Saucedo leads the charge for RSL-AZ.
In Southern California, Chivas USA hosts Nomads SC on Saturday with the MLS Academy anticipating the return of U15 Boys National Team star Joshua Perez to the lineup with the U16 side. Perez was recently in the Netherlands while training with PSV Eindhoven. This will be his first game back.