The U.S. Soccer Federation has selected two LAFC players for its under-17 residency program. Stevie Rodriguez and Martin Arrieta will live at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. for much of the winter and spring (The Academy takes its name from the famous sports agency). Rodriguez and Arrieta join 38 of the best U-17 American players, who will train with leading coaches and compete against national teams from other countries in preparation for the next U-17 World Cup.

U.S. Soccer, the governing body of the sport in this country, created the Residency program in 1999 to develop players for U.S. national teams. Residency alumni include stars Landon Donovan, DeMarcus Beasley, Freddy Adu and Michael Bradley. Selection is among the highest honors for junior players.

Rodriguez is an attacking midfielder for LAFC. Arrieta plays striker. Both players have shone through their creativity and feel for the game. A third LAFC player, Jovanny Gomez, was asked to try out for the Residency program after appearing in a showcase tournament late last year. It is a credit for any club to see one of its players chosen for the Residency program. It is rarer and more remarkable when two are chosen and others considered.

Rodriguez and Arrieta will train in the morning under Wilmer Cabrera, a two-time World Cup participant and respected coach, and other national coaches. They will attend classes in the afternoon at the Bradenton Academy. They will have access to IMG’s state-of-the-art fitness training complex, which includes two swimming pools, and practice on one of three Bermuda grass fields, or in a domed turf facility on campus. “It’s very significant that LAFC has been able to repeatedly cultivate such talented players,” said Ted Chronopoulos, the vice president of soccer operations. “Other players in our club can see through Stevie and Martin and Jovanny what’s possible when they combine their talent with hard work and determination. We look forward to seeing these players and others climb to the elite ranks of U.S. players.”

20 / December / 2009  In the News 


#1 Gaby on 12.26.09 at 7:51 pm

Way to go Stevie! Go and show what you’re made of!!!

#2 Esteban Rodriguez on 12.31.09 at 2:19 pm

Stevie and Martin;
Good luck in your new adventure, we are confident that you guys will do well!!!

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