The New York Red Bulls Academy officially kicked off its Academy Affiliate program in February 2021 with the aim of creating a true professional pathway for the top talents at selected elite level clubs in the tri-state.
Since the initial launch with Blau Weiss Gottschee, Ironbound Soccer Club, and TSF Academy, two additional Academy Affiliates have since came on board: Brooklyn Italians Soccer Club and Players Development Academy (PDA).
The Pathway To Pros program has been designed to fully align and connect each Affiliate to the New York Red Bulls player development pathway, where selected players from each of the five (5) Affiliate clubs will have the opportunity to train at the Academy once per week throughout the course of the season.
In total, 17 Affiliate players will start training this week with the Academy (16) and Pre-Academy (1) as part of the initiative.
Sean McCafferty, Academy Director, New York Red Bulls:
“The Pathway To Pros initiative not only truly connects our Affiliate family to our player development pathway, but also allows us to provide a platform to identify, present, discuss, and share feedback on Affiliate top talents within the Red Bulls Academy extended player pool.
In collaboration with the Affiliate, we can now more effectively predict and manage the transition of Affiliate top talents into the system by blending the processes of identification and development via an extended observation timeframe. And with the greater amount of contact time, we can further educate the players on the standards of The Red Bulls Way.
We are really excited to invite the top players from our Academy Affiliates to Red Bulls Training Facility in the coming days, weeks, months, and seasons ahead.”
Paul McGlynn, Academy Director, BW Gottschee:
“The Pathway To Pros initiative is exactly the reason why we aligned with the New York Red Bulls. It is paramount our top talents have regular opportunities to train and showcase their abilities. The best players should train with the best players – which turn will accelerate their development to the next level. We are excited for the selected BW Gottschee players and for the future players that will go through the program.”
Sam Nellins, Technical Director, PDA:
“To have an affiliation with a professional club only 25-miles away from our facility that truly believes in playing the local talent we have here in New Jersey is a real blessing our club. The PDA top talents will benefit greatly from the exposure given by Sean and his staff, and we know in the very near future another one of our lads will grace the turf in Harrison by pulling on the New York Red Bulls First Team jersey.
We are excited about the potential of this relationship, and it adds another level to the development pathway for our club and the local soccer landscape in New Jersey and New York. The Pathway To Pros program will reap the rewards of all the hard work done with the players of the clubs involved and Red Bulls Academy will provide them the vehicle to achieve their dreams of playing at the top level of soccer here in the United States and, for some, in Europe.”
John Saunders, Sporting Director, TSF Academy:
“The Pathway To Pros program provides our most talented and promising players with an opportunity to train with, and compete against the best players in their age group. We can only tell if a top player is ready for the next level by exposing them to the environment at Red Bulls Academy and monitoring their progress.
This program gives the players time to adapt and fully embrace the challenge. Now, every training session or game is an opportunity for the players to show the TSF Academy Head Coaches and prove to themselves that they can get to the next level.”
Should you wish to gain more information on the Red Bulls Academy Affiliate Program, please click here.