On Tuesday, MLS announced the details for the 2015-16 Generation adidas Cup, hosted by FC Dallas. The 10-day elite youth competition featuring MLS and top international youth academies will kick off on Friday, March 18, at the Toyota Soccer Center in Frisco, Texas. Select matches, including the semifinals and final, will be streamed live on MLSsoccer.com.
After a qualifying tournament that saw MLS teams square off throughout the spring and fall, six qualified for the Championship Division of the Generation adidas Cup. The six berths at stake in the Generation adidas Cup Championship Division were reserved for the top two finishers in each of the East, Central and West regions. Players born in 1999 or later are eligible to compete in the tournament.
The other 11 academy sides that failed to qualify for the Championship Division will still make the trip to Frisco in March, competing in the Premier Division.
“The Generation adidas Cup is a world-class competition that offers MLS academy teams the opportunity to compete against some of the most talented youth players and established clubs in the world,” MLS Technical Director of Competition Alfonso Mondelo said. “Every year, the level of the competition continues to rise and provides a platform in which to display and evaluate the growth of MLS’ youth development system across North America.”
FC Dallas and Columbus Crew SC advanced to the Championship Division out of the Central Region, while Toronto FC and the New York Red Bulls advanced out of the East. The last two spots went to the LA Galaxy and the San Jose Earthquakes, who advanced out of the West Region.
Those six teams will face off against six teams from across the globe, including defending champion River Plate, Valencia and Mexico's U-17 national team. The Premier Division will include 11 MLS teams and five foreign teams.
The 2016 Generation adidas Cup will also deliver the first MLS academy action for future expansion clubs Atlanta United – which is set to join the league in 2017 – and LAFC, as both teams will field U-12 Academy sides in the second annual U-12 tournament. The small-sided 7-v-7 competition will be held at the Toyota Soccer Center from March 24-26 and will feature a total of 12 MLS Academy teams.
Atlanta United, Chicago Fire, Colorado Rapids, D.C. United, FC Dallas, Houston Dynamo, LAFC, New York Red Bulls, Orlando City, Portland Timbers, Sporting Kansas City, Toronto FC will be joined by international clubs Villarreal, Celta de Vigo, Querétaro and Chivas Guadalajara.