Crew Technical Director and United States U-20 Men's National Team assistant coach Brian Bliss and Crew Soccer Academy product Wil Trapp left Columbus on Monday for the 2012 Milk Cup in Northern Ireland. The U-20s will train at Liverpool FC's facilities this week before their opening match on Saturday against defending champions Denmark. After finishing in third place last year, Trapp feels the U-20s are poised to make a run at the title in 2012.
"I'm pretty excited," the Akron midfielder said last week. "We've got a good group going. I think with the team we have, we can make a good run at the final."
"The level of competition is good," Bliss added. "It's still, from those countries and the U.S. as well, the preparatory phase leading up to the next cycle for the (FIFA U-20 World Cup) qualifying period. So it's a good opportunity for us to get into Europe and play some quality European teams to measure ourselves and see where we're at. We're looking forward to it. We've been invited to that tournament for a number of years and we've done well in the past there. I think we have the same expectations this time around."
Trapp has split his time between this summer between the U-20 National Team, training with the Crew, and playing with Bliss and the Crew Juniors Super-20s.
"I've been playing a lot of high quality games, training with the Crew as well has been helping me a lot," Trapp said of his progression in 2012. "Just working on speed of play, it's gotten a lot faster. My range of passing as well. I think playing with the National Team, as well as training (with the Crew), has really pushed me to the next level a little bit more."
"(Trapp) brings the same stuff to the table every time," Bliss complimented the Gahanna native. "He brings a good attitude, professionalism, he knows his role, and he's a leader when he's on the field. Organizing, he's generally in possession of the ball, and guys look to him for that stuff whether it's with (the Crew) or the U-20s."
The U-20 National Team will compete against Chile, Denmark, Mexico, Turkey, and host Northern Ireland at the Milk Cup.
The Crew Juniors Under-20 team, coached by Crew technical director Brian Bliss, closed out the USL Super-20 regular season by winning the Midwest Division with a perfect 7-0-0 record. In the last three games of the season, the CJ 20s defeated Cincinnati’s Kings Soccer Academy 6-1 on July 5, followed by a pair of Michigan club’s – 2-0 over Waza FC on July 7 and 8-1 over Alliance Academy on July 8. The 20s are now qualified for the USL Super-20 Championships in Bradenton, Fla., which are set to begin on July 19.
The Crew Juniors Under-19 team, coached by Crew technical director Brian Bliss, won their second regional title in three years at the USYS Midwest Regional Championships in Saginaw, Mich. The 19s started the tournament with an 11-0 win over South Dakota United Madrid on Saturday (June 23), with goals by Chris Davis, Fatai Alashe, Chandler Gagnon, Cole Denormandie (2), Jordan Tyler, Nick Hagglund, Charlie Macias, Matt Hill, Adam Montague and Will Trapp. On Sunday (June 24), the 19s continued their dominance of their group with another commanding win, 9-1 over Kentucky’s United 1996 Internationals, behind goals by Trapp, Denormandie (2), Alashe, Davis, Kofi Agyapong, Montague and Tyler. The Crew Juniors closed out the group stage undefeated with a 3-2 win over Kansas City FC behind goals by Tyler, Trapp and Davis on Monday (June 25). A 3-0 semifinal victory over Wisconsin’s NSC–FCGB followed on Tuesday (June 26), with goals from Will Walker, Matt Walker and Montague. And in Wednesday’s final, goals from Agyapong, Matt Walker and Tyler led Crew Juniors to a 3-1 win over Pacesetter Premier of Toledo. The Crew Juniors U-19s will now attempt to capture their second McGuire Cup national title in three years at the USYS National Championships in Rock Hill, S.C., July 25-29.
For more info on the tourney, please visity the USYS website.
The Crew Juniors U19 squad had an impressive showing over the weekend to win its group at the US Youth Soccer Regionals in Saginaw, Michigan. On Friday, the Juniors beat South Dakota United Madrid 11-0 in the team's opening match. It continued its dominance on Saturday with a 9-1 win against United 96 from Kentucky. The team finished group play today by beating KCFC 3-2. Cole DeNormandie leads the team with four goals in the tournament. The U19s move on to the semifinals to play New United from Wisconsin.
For more info on the tourney, please visity the USYS website.
A pair of Crew Soccer Academy standouts have begun their summer by spending time with their respective youth national teams.
Gahanna native Wil Trapp is currently in South America with the US U-20 National Team for a trio of friendlies. The Akron midfielder assisted on Victor Pineda's strike to put the US onto the scoresheet in Tuesday's 4-2 loss against Uruguay. The US will face Uruguay again today in Montevideo before heading west to face Chile on June 12.
Benny Swanson (Grove City) recently helped the US U-15 National Team to a fifth place finish in the International Marveld Tournament in Holland. The team finished ahead of the likes of Ajax, Olympique Marseille, Liverpool, and Real Madrid academy sides in the tournament.
Wil Trapp - courtesy of TheCrew.com
Benny Swanson - courtesy of Marveld Toernooi
TopDrawerSoccer.com unveiled its 2016 rankings yesterday, and the Crew Soccer Academy's Benny Swanson comes in ranked as the 3rd overall player in the class. The Grove City native recently made an appearance in a Crew reserve game against New York on April 7.
TopDrawerSoccer.com released its newest rankings for the class of 2015 earlier this week. Two Crew Soccer Academy players come in ranked in the top 100.
Goalkeeper Patrick Siegfried is ranked No.42 overall in the class and is the fourth-ranked goalkeeper in 2015. Just behind Siegfried is fellow 'keeper Carter Richardson. The Dublin native is the sixth-ranked goalie in the class and the 55th ranked prospect overall.
Check out the entire list here.
The Crew Soccer Academy's Wil Trapp has been called into the United States U20 National Team camp in Portland, Oregon by head coach Tab Ramos. The Akron midfielder and Gahanna native chipped in five assists for the Zips last season on his way to being named MAC Newcomer of the Year in 2011.
The U20 National Team will play matches against Portland State University and a yet to be determined side while in the Rose City.
The Crew Soccer Academy's Rhodes Moore talks about joining the Crew on its trip to Toronto to play in Saturday's reserve match:
The Crew Soccer Academy's Wolves U15/16 squad debuts in the number one spot of ESPN's Development Academy Power Rankings this week. The CSA Wolves are 6-0-1 thus far in the academy season. Ali Jawad leads the U15/16 squad with six goals early on in the season.
CSA joined forces with the Michigan Wolves in May 2011. The club is based out of Livonia, MI.
Check out the full rankings on ESPN.com.