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U.S. Producing High-Level Results at Nike’s ‘The Chance’

Contest Expands as USA Sees Two Development Academy Players in Mix

© Steve Dipaola/Nike

Nike's The Chance

IN THE IMAGE: U.S. Soccer technical advisors speak to a group of players during Nike’s “The Chance” competition earlier this year.

Nike’s “The Chance” global soccer competition means exactly what the name states: a chance for some of the top youth soccer players to get noticed by the
best scouts and coaches in the world for the opportunity to advance to the professional ranks.

The Chance launched in 2010 with 40 countries involved. In 2012, the USA is a part of the scene for the first time and the search has included
approximately 55 countries.

The competition has reached the Global Finals in Barcelona, where four U.S. players were invited among the final 100. Two U.S. Soccer Development Academy
players made the first cut that reduced the field to 52 – Brian Iloski of the San Diego Surf and Bryan Windsor of the Colorado Rapids. Iloski then made the
next cut as the field was whittled down to 26.

Here is a quick rundown about the competition:

Sweet 16:
The Global Finals conclude on Saturday, Aug. 25, as 16 players will be selected to participate in an international tour at the Nike Academy Residency
program for a six-week stretch that includes academy competition against the likes of Manchester United and Juventus.

Nike Academy Residency:
One winner will be selected among the final 16 to the UK-based Nike Academy Residency program, which has a partnership with the English Premier League. The
paid contract would include multiple fixtures against Premier League reserve teams and other professional clubs, with the opportunity to be seen by a
number of coaches.

Getting Recognized:
A big part of the initial recognition among interested participants was “Get Noticed Events” where clubs had the ability to create a team Facebook page
where friends and teammates could generate social chatter and create enough noise to entice Nike to send a scout to come watch the team train. This element
was also a part of the 2010 Chance, but has grown significantly for the 2012 competition. More than 100,000 players registered worldwide to take part in
the social aspect of The Chance campaign this year. That figure is approximately 25,000 more than 2010.

U.S. Journey:
Through open call events in five metropolitan areas in the U.S. (Dallas; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles; New York/New Jersey; Chicago), scouts and U.S.
Soccer Technical Advisors narrowed down a 48-player group to its National Finals, where then four USA players advanced to the Global Finals in Barcelona.

Global Mix:
Through these final stages, participants are mixed among players from at least 10 countries when they break into 16-player training sessions, helping
players grow and experience various styles of play.

Professional Boost:
In 2010, the eight participants of The Chance who went into the Nike Academy have all signed professional contracts with first division leagues.

Quick Links:

For more about The Chance, visit nike.com, and continue to follow ussoccer.com for future updates on Development Academy players Brian Iloski and Bryan

Related Topics

Development Academy

Source Article from http://www.ussoccer.com/News/Development-Academy/2012/08/US-Producing-High-Level-Results-at-The-Chance-by-Nike.aspx
U.S. Producing High-Level Results at Nike’s ‘The Chance’
U.S. Soccer: Latest Headlines

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