Money does not grow on trees.
The adage that parents like to tell their children also applies to the big business of club soccer.
In an effort to cut down on some of those exuberant costs, teams get a bit creative with their approach. This weekend, Houston Dynamo and Sporting Kansas City are trying to eliminate an extra trip for the teams by playing both of their games over one weekend in Houston.
These are not meaningless clashes in the standings either, as both clubs are still in the thick of the race in the Frontier Division for both age groups. Houston Dynamo has a shot to jump into second place in the U16 age group with a pair of wins from the games against Sporting KC.
The flip-flop clash is not the only fixture on the card this weekend. Check out a preview of the rest of the games from the USSF’s Development Academy below.
North Carolina clubs Charlotte Soccer Academy and North Meck SC head down to Florida for the weekend for games against Kendall SC and Weston FC, as the clubs rejoin Academy action in the Southeast Division.
Weston FC U18 is looking to jump back into the top two in the division with a pair of wins over the weekend against the Carolina clubs. The Florida club is the top scoring team in the division thanks to the output from Nicholas Pappacena who has 13 goals in 12 games.
South Carolina United Battery Academy U18 is also looking to make the march into the top two spot in the division by the end of the weekend. The Battery youth affiliate hosts Chargers SC on Sunday with eyes on pushing its division-winning streak to four games.
In the U16 age group, Orlando City continues to dominate the competition. The debutants to the Development Academy are 8-1-1 in division play this season after a 3-1 win over Kendall SC last weekend. On Sunday, Orlando faces IMG Academy. OCYS keeper Braeden Luna has only let in four goals in the last four games.
In the Atlantic Division, Richmond Kickers takes on Virginia Rush on Sunday. Both clubs have fluttered during the first half of the season, but Virginia Rush U18 did win two of its last four before the break.
The Lone Star state battles continue over the weekend with Texans SC Houston taking on Andromeda, Lonestar SC hosting FC Dallas, and Solar Chelsea SC squaring off with Texas Rush.
The final fixture offers major consequences for the U16 age group with Solar currently holding the top spot in the division, but Texas Rush is not far off the pace in the sixth position. Nathanael Rennhack (seven goals), Bryson Asher (six goals), and Brock Dudley (five goals) pace Solar’s balanced attack.
FC Dallas U18 is looking to close the gap at the top of the division with a win over Lonestar SC Academy on Sunday. FC Dallas trails cross-town rivals Dallas Texans in the standings, but could make up some ground this weekend. This is the first meeting of the season between the clubs.
Every team in the Southwest Division is in action this weekend. Highlighting the schedule is LA Galaxy’s return from the brief winter break with a game against Pateadores on Sunday. Galaxy U18 is top of the division with a comfy cushion over RSL-Arizona and Real So Cal, respectively. Pateadores could present a challenge though with the talented attacking duo of Roberto Escudero and Kevin DeLaTorre leading the way.
Elsewhere in SoCal, Real So Cal and Arsenal FC play host to two clubs from Northern California over the weekend. Real So Cal takes on Cal Odyssey on Saturday while Arsenal plays San Jose Earthquakes. The fixtures are reversed on Sunday.
In the lone Northern California based game of the weekend, San Juan Soccer Club takes on Chivas USA on Sunday. In its first season in the Development Academy, San Juan has been unable to string together positive results and was trounced to the tune of 9-0 last week against Vancouver Whitecaps in the U18 game.