Sporting Kansas City is thrilled to announce that seven players from five Academy Affiliates have been nominated to participate in this year’s Generation Adidas International Select Program.
Mitch Stephens (Sporting Springfield) and Brock Wandel (Sporting Southern Indiana) are headed to Real Madrid in Madrid, Spain while Carson Schmidt (Sporting Blue Valley), Nick Reid (Sporting Springfield), Heath George (Sporting Lee’s Summit) and Caleb Day (Sporting Wichita) are visiting AFC Ajax in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Emma St. John (Sporting J.B. Marine) and Felicia Knox (Sporting Blue Valley) are setting off for Olympique Lyonnais in Lyon, France.
Each year, the top adidas clubs nationwide can nominate players to participate in the program. This summer, 96 talented players from some of the nation’s top clubs will take the field for this exclusive opportunity. In celebration of this once in a lifetime experience and amazing achievement, the players selected from Academy Affiliates will receive special on-field recognition at Children’s Mercy Park in front of a packed house at a future Sporting Kansas City match.
For the last nine years, Generation adidas International has partnered with premier adidas clubs to develop youth soccer in the United States on the international level. Generation adidas International offers an exclusive opportunity through its Select Programs, inviting talented players to train at three of the world’s most powerful soccer clubs:
A.F.C. Ajax is the most successful club in the Netherlands and has always played in the highest league, the Eredivisie since its foundation in 1956. They have won 33 Eredivisie League titles, 18 KNVB Cups, and four UEFA Champions League titles in their illustrious history.
Real Madrid is among the top clubs in the world. They have never been relegated from the top league in Spain, La Liga. In domestic soccer they have won 63 major trophies and in European and worldwide competitions they have won a record 22 major trophies. This past year they became the first club to win back to back Champions Leagues.
Olympique Lyonnais is one of the most successful clubs in women’s soccer, both nationally and internationally. They have won 14 Division 1 Feminine titles (including 10 consecutive), seven Coupe de France titles, and three Women’s Champions League Titles. Last year they won all three competitions and are the highest ranked team in UEFA.
These individuals will have the opportunity to experience training sessions at the club’s academies, individual assessments from club coaches, competitive matches against top quality teams, tours of the stadiums, guided tours of the cities, and gifts from adidas.
Generation adidas International prides itself on providing opportunities to those who wish to develop themselves at the most elite level. CEO Billy Hartman believes, “there is an insatiable desire in the players, coaches and parents of America to expose their children to the best that our sport has to offer and who share our passion for the beautiful game…Advised by some of the world’s top academy directors, our expertise in soccer and travel logistics will ensure a smooth trip.”
The players embark on their journeys on Aug. 12 and return Aug. 21. To follow along during their experience and to learn about future opportunities with Academy Affiliate program, please follow the Sporting KC Youth Soccer on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.