New York Red Bulls
The FC Dallas U-14 Pre Academy team coached by Francisco Molina claimed the U.S. Club National Premier Leagues Champions Cup in Waukegan, Ill. on July 31. A national tournament open to all of the regional premier league champions, FC Dallas U-14s advanced to the competition by winning the Texas Pre Academy League’s U-14 division with an undefeated record of 16-0-5.
The U-14s opened the tournament with a 2-0 win over South Carolina United Battery on Friday, July 27. Goals were scored by Weston McKennie, who scored 10 goals in the regular season, and leading scorer Christian Ramirez, who tallied 19 goals to lead the U-14s during the regular season.
The next day FC Dallas faced HBC Fusion of New York. Richard Tapia and Bernie ZuaZua scored in that game to give the U-14 side its second straight 2-0 win. The team's final group stage match was a must-win against the Chicago Fire. Ramirez came through in the match, putting away a cross from teammate Eric Davies to give FC Dallas a 1-0 win and a spot in the semifinals.
FCD met DMS of California in the semifinals on the morning of Monday, July 30. After 70 minutes of scoreless regulation time, the sides played two 10 minute overtime periods. The breakthrough came in the second overtime when Ramirez scored his third goal of the tournament off a ZuaZua corner kick to give FC Dallas a late 1-0 lead. Minutes later Delfino Garcia put a shot on goal that the DMS 'keeper deflected, but Tapia pounced on the rebound to put the game away with a 2-0 win.
FC Dallas faced the New York Red Bulls in the championship game on Tuesday, July 31. New York dominated large portions of the match, but the Dallas defense held strong to maintain a scoreless match through regulation. Early in the first overtime period, FC Dallas established possession and strung together a series of passes that ended with Jessi Najera playing a through ball to Tapia. Being chased by two Red Bulls defenders, Tapia didn't hesitate to pull the trigger on a shot that beat the New York goalkeeper to give FCD the 1-0 lead in overtime. After some stellar defending in the dying minutes, FC Dallas won the match with yet another shutout to claim the championship.
After an undefeated season that started in Sptember of 2011, the U-14s won five games in five consecutive days without allowing a goal against and outscored their opponents 8-0 to win the national title.
Christian Ramirez - 3
Richard Tapia - 3
Bernie ZuaZua - 1
Weston McKennie - 1
The FC Dallas U-18 and U-16 Academy teams have qualified for the U.S. Soccer Develoment Academy Playoffs for the third straight year. The event will take place on the Complex at FC Dallas Stadium for the second year in a row, with games being played next Monday, June 25 through Friday, June 29.
The FC Dallas U-18s enter the playoffs as the top seed from the Texas Division, having clinched the title weeks ago thanks to an impressive season that saw them go 24-4-3 for 75 points overall. They were drawn into Group 5 along with Sockers FC of Illinois, Real Salt Lake AZ of Arizona, and McLean Youth Soccer of Virginia.
— U.S. Soccer YNT (@ussoccer_ynt) June 18, 2012
The U-16s qualified for this year's playoffs as the sixth seeded wildcard after finishing fourth in a competitive Texas Division. They were drawn into Group 1 and will face CASL Chelsea FC Academy of North Carolina, the New York Red Bulls and Georgia United.
— U.S. Soccer YNT (@ussoccer_ynt) June 18, 2012
At the end of each season the top two teams from each of the Academy's 10 divisions qualify for the playoffs along with 12 wildcard teams. The wildcard teams are determined by a points per games played average. At the end of the season, 64 teams (32 from each age group) make the playoffs.
The 32 teams in each age group are ranked based on overall points per game and placed into four pods. Teams are then drawn at random from the four pods into eight groups comprised of four teams each.
Each team plays three games during the playoffs, facing their group opponents once apiece. Upon the conclusion of the playoffs the winner of each group will advance to Finals Week, which will take place from July 16-23 in Houston.
Visit FCDallas.com later this week for an in-depth break down of all six FC Dallas opponents and check in throughout next week for full coverage of FC Dallas in the U.S. Soccer Development Academy Playoffs.
Full match highlights of FCD's 2-1 win over New York.
Zach Loyd scores his second career goal to put FC Dallas up 1-0.
Blas Perez finds the loose ball to test Meara.
Ricardo Villar chips a shot over Meara to gain the 2-0 lead.
Kenny Cooper pulls one back for New York late.
FC Dallas and U.S. Men’s National team midfielder Brek Shea is giving away this original painting celebrating 2012 First Kick and his autographed game-worn boots from this Sunday's game.
The winner must be present at the March 11th game vs. New York Red Bulls here at FC Dallas Stadium where the winner will be announced at halftime. Shea will meet the prize winner in the WinStar River Club following the match to hand over the artwork and his boots.
Shea is running the contest through his Left Foot Studio website and to be eligible fans to follow him and the studio on Twitter to enter. The official entry form is here.
Brek Shea is prominently featured in a USA Today story discussing the rise of young stars in MLS. New York Red Bulls player Juan Agudelo is the other player discussed. Both, of course, will be on the pitch this Sunday for First Kick at FC Dallas Stadium. Read the whole story, but here's an excerpt:
New MLS on NBC announcer Arlo White made a visit to NBC Sports Talk to discuss the upcoming season and managed to work in some FC Dallas talk. Check it out:
We're two and a half weeks away from First Kick at FC Dallas Stadium between FCD and New York Red Bulls. It's, of course, the first game on NBCSN as part of the new TV contract MLS signed with the network. This commercial started airing this week in anticipation of the new season. Look for FCD's Brek Shea in the spot:
Ex-FC Dallas & newly acquired New York Red Bulls player Kenny Cooper got to catch up with Brek Shea before Tuesday's scrimmage in Cancun.