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A peek at the future: Red Bulls U-18 vs. U.S. Under-17


If you are wondering where the future of American soccer is this weekend, it is not in London or France. it is in a midwestern Illinois city where hundreds of top prospects have converged to show how the American talent pool is being filled.

The U.S. Soccer Development Academy kicked off its Spring Showcase in Rockford, Illinois on Friday with all 126 member teams sending representatives.

The first day of action featured a high-profile match-up between the U.S. Under-17 national team vs. the New York Red Bulls Under-18 team. In a match-up featuring some of the most highly-regarded prospects in American youth soccer, the U.S. team posted a thrilling 3-2 victory.

The game had it all. From top prospects (such as Stefon Jerome, Shaquille Phillips and Joe Gyau for the U-17s and Jonny Exantus and Matt Kassel for the Red Bulls), to insane goals like Luis Gil’s Gol Olympico (corner kick straight into the Red Bulls net), to two-goal star performance from Exantus to a game-winning free kick by Marlon Duran.

Wish you could see the highlights? You can, courtesy of the folks at U.S. Soccer:


The showcase will run throughout Memorial Day weekend, with the country’s best and brightest taking part.

Share your thoughts on the event, and the video highlights of USA-Red Bulls, in the comments section below.


  1. Haha, its all good Ives. Didnt mean anything by it, just got that Rockford pride i suppose. Hopefully i can get out at see some of the games this weekend. Keep up the good work.

  2. Sorry about Rockford folks. Having seens signs for Rockford every time I’ve gone to Chicago I thought it was closer to Chicago than it is (though some of you don’t seem to realize that decent-sized cities can, in fact, be called suburbs of a very large city).

    And the U.S. team’s second goal is a corner kick Siv. Looks pretty clear on the video (unless there was a foul right on the corner flag, and even then it’s arguing semantics, the point was he scored from there, which is pretty amazing.)

  3. @Posted by: Jacobw | May 24, 2008 at 03:06 PM

    the goal off the corner is the very next goal sequence. Watch again. Both were quality strikes. Though giving up a goal dirct on a corner is unacceptable if you are a RBNY youth supporter. Kid needs to train a bit harder.

    Those parents were comical. That lady needs a sock stuffed in her mouth.

    Did they mandate that defense not be played today? We are starting to look like the Sub-Saharan African “what the hell is defense? Teams.

    Oh and if Rockford is a suburb of Chicago then I guess Milwaukee is one too 😉 Rockford is a whole separate city.

  4. Say whatever you want about the highlights…

    The fact that they are available and that we all cared enough to watch them says a lot about soccer, er, football, er, soccer (Jim Rome) in the US these days

  5. That was some poor goalkeeping by the red bull kid. How are you going to come out that far and miss by that much on that first goal? The RBNY keeper was nowhere near the ball when the U.S. crossed it, and he was way out of position on the second and third goals.

  6. Jacob, don’t know what you are watching, but that was for sure a corner kick. Very impressive indeed.

  7. based on everyone’s comments, I decided to listen as carefully as I could and watched the video again. Right after the lady says “see how they cheat” another woman says “I don’t know what’s more interesting, the soccer or the parents!”


  8. Gotta love hyper-engaged parents!


    Was there any doubt that this woman is from Jersey?

    Don’t fawn over your children too much lady.

  9. The Marlon Duran freekick…Nice!

    The fact that he made one, then had to re-take the kick, and then makes the second kick….REDICULOUS!!

    That would have been an incredible game to have watched in person. Wish I was there!

  10. That didn’t look like a corner to me, it looked like a free kick close to that area though.

    Still very impressive.


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