Carolina Core FC Adds Youth Academy Teams To Play In MLS NEXT
Carolina Core FC (CCFC) announced today its launch of the Carolina Core FC Academy, which will begin in fall 2024 with two elite youth teams - U13 and U14 - entering MLS NEXT, the top youth soccer development league in North America. This is a significant expansion for the club as it launches its youth development program and builds a professional pathway for elite youth players.
“Our investor group is dedicated to creating equitable access to career opportunities and professional development through the game of soccer. The establishment of a professional men's soccer team in MLS Next Pro is our first component of the comprehensive career pathway, however, we are proud to add our next piece: MLS NEXT,” said majority investor, Megan Oglesby. “Carolina Core FC Academy has been established to work in conjunction with existing youth clubs and CCFC’s first team to ensure that every child has the opportunity to have a successful career through the sport of soccer.”
MLS Next provides a clear path to professional soccer for youth. By joining the program, Carolina Core FC Academy will be able to compete against other top-level teams from across the country, exposing the core of North Carolina and its players to the highest quality competition and enabling them to develop their skills and potential.
“Participating in MLS NEXT will expose our local players to the best player development experience in the country. We look forward to collaborating with the existing youth clubs in our region as we all work toward the unifying goal of preparing players for the highest levels of competition,” said Eddie Pope, CCFC Chief Sporting Officer.
With CCFC Academy’s entrance into MLS NEXT, they will strengthen their pipeline to their professional soccer team and ensure that the club will produce top-quality players for years to come. “Our club is focused on growing the game of soccer in the Carolina Core and today's announcement further solidifies our commitment to player development within the region,” Andy Smith, CCFC President.
Carolina Core FC Academy teams are set to begin training ahead of the 2024/2025 season. CCFC’s Head Scout, Andy Williams, has already started player identification in the region. The Academy will make additional announcements on upcoming identification opportunities for the elite youth player.