The US Youth Soccer ODP philosophy is to identify players of the highest caliber on a continuing and consistent basis, which will lead to increased success for the US National Teams in the international arena. The purpose of the program is to identify a pool of players in each age group from which a National Team will be selected for international competition; to provide high-level training to benefit and enhance the development of the players at all levels; and, through the use of carefully selected and licensed coaches, develop a mechanism for the exchange of ideas and curriculum to improve all levels of coaching.
Virginia’s young players cannot be overstated. Coaches and players are only as good as the level to which they have been exposed. International competition at the State Program level prepares Virginia players for the demands of Regional and National programs.
State Associations are encouraged to develop programs that work in tandem with Regional and National Programs. The Regional and National programs include international competition. The Region1 program specifically encourages its state associations to include international competition as a component of the state program. It is the goal of the Virginia Youth Soccer Association to provide a high quality developmental experience for all the players participating in the Olympic Development Program.
The purpose of ODP Foreign Travel Policy is to ensure the highest quality experience for the players, coaches, and volunteers participating in the program. It is the opinion of the VYSA Technical Staff that the international experience is extremely important in a top competitive player’s development. It allows our players to test themselves against some of the best youth players and clubs in the world. It is important for the players to realize that they are competing against players from all over the world not just our own country. Lastly, it is tremendous preparation for participation on regional and national teams as well as college and or professional soccer. The experiences these players bring home also benefit their club teammates as well. Each player participating on a team brings to the team their combined soccer experiences. Experiences that increase the level of a player helps to develop the players participating with them.
It is also recognized by the staff that the cultural benefits associated with international travel is extremely important to the personal growth and development of the child. To observe and participate in a foreign culture and experience first hand, the customs, languages, food, and ways of a different people can only enhance the child’s future education and leave a lasting impression.