The Top Youth Soccer Clubs in the U.S.

Many young soccer players have had to re-evaluate their club team at some point in their development. Is the coach the right fit? If you want to play in college, are you being seen by enough recruiters? Do you get along with your teammates? Perhaps most importantly, are your individual skills as a player being fostered so you can be your absolute best? 

There are many different deciding factors at play when choosing a club to try out for, but if you have goals of playing in college – or even professionally – you may want to look at the top club near you first. Here’s some of the top youth soccer clubs throughout the U.S. 

Solar SC – Dallas, TX

Solar Soccer Club is a top 20 club throughout several different age groups according to Top Drawer Soccer. According to the club’s website, several of their players have been called into youth national team camps. However, players in Texas (specifically the Dallas area) can also choose between FC Dallas and Dallas Sting – two other top rated Dallas-based clubs ranked highly on Top Drawer Soccer. 

NASA/Tophat SC – Atlanta, GA

Socceristas near Atlanta should absolutely consider NASA/Tophat if they’re in the market for a new club. It’s where Emily Sonnett played her youth club career, now she’s a World Cup champion.

PDA – New Jersey

Across three different age groups, New Jersey’s Players Development Academy is the #1 girls club in the U.S. So players in the New York/New Jersey area should absolutely check out PDA if their sights are set on playing for the best club possible. Heather O’reilly and Tobin Heath both played their youth soccer at PDA, and the club continues to see many of their players go into the U.S. youth soccer teams

Real Colorado – Colorado

It should come as no surprise that the club that brought up Mallory Pugh is one of the top youth soccer club’s in the country. Real Colorado is one of the top girls’ soccer clubs across multiple age groups, according to Top Drawer Soccer. Other notable Real Colorado alumni include Janine Beckie, Keelin Winters who retired from the Seattle Reign, and Taryn Hemmings, who played for the Boston Breakers and Chicago Red Stars. 

San Jose Earthquakes Academy – San Jose, CA

The San Jose Earthquakes Academy is another top ranked team according to Top Drawer Soccer. Per the club’s alumni page, many of the girls who play for the Earthquakes are now playing at top soccer universities like Stanford and UCLA. 

So Cal Blues – California

Any young soccerista in SoCal has heard of the Blues. It’s where Ashley Sanchez – a player earmarked for a future with the USWNT as a teen – played. England goalkeeper Karen Bardsley also played for the Blues, as did McCall Zerboni

The St. James FC Virginia – Leesburg, VA

The St. James FC Virginia (formerly known as FC Virginia) is the top club in the DC area. When FC Virginia was acquired by The St. James in 2019, the club’s teams gained a breadth of new invaluable resources, these include a full-sized FIFA pitch and activities designed to aid in the development of well-rounded players. 

North Carolina FC Youth/Courage DA – North Carolina

The North Carolina Courage has absolutely dominated the NWSL, and similarly, the North Carolina FC Youth club is one of the top-ranked clubs in the region. Though the club’s youth program only started in 2017, like the NWSL’s Courage, they’ve quickly cemented themselves as a premier soccer environment. 

OL Reign Academy (Formerly Seattle Reign Academy) – Washington

Players in the Washington state area should absolutely consider trying out for the OL Reign Academy. For the U16 age group, they’re considered a top 20 club in the country and the club’s website promises a program centered on developing the next generation of great female soccer players.  

LAFC Slammers – Costa Mesa, CA

Just like LAFC has taken the MLS by storm, the LAFC Slammers club team burst onto the scene and made themselves known in the girls’ club soccer community. For the 2018-19 season, the club one the highest award possible in the ECNL: Overall Club Champion. If that accolade wasn’t enough, before the Slammers became affiliated with LAFC, Christen Press played for the club in her youth, eventually playing at Stanford and becoming a two-time World Cup champion.

Feature photo via @ncfc_youth



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