San Diego FC break ground on performance center, Right To Dream Academy

Training facility - San Diego FC

San Diego FC checked off a significant milestone Thursday, breaking ground on their training facility that will also house their Right to Dream Youth Development Academy.

The 30th MLS club, marching towards a 2025 kickoff, held the ceremony at the site of the future facility in El Cajon on the Sycuan Reservation. 

"The San Diego FC training facility and Right to Dream Academy will represent one of the most innovative soccer development facilities not only in MLS but in all of global soccer,” said MLS Commissioner Don Garber. 

“For boys and girls in the San Diego area, it will serve as an inspiration to everyone who dreams of playing for their local MLS or NWSL team, or even representing the U.S. on the world stage.”

The Right to Dream Academy San Diego is an integral part of the club’s 125,000-square-foot campus that will feature:

  • 50,000-square-foot state-of-the-art sports performance facility shared by the first team and academy teams.
  • Five full-sized soccer fields, including three natural turf fields and two synthetic turf fields.

The residential academy will accommodate male students between the ages of 12- 18, spanning grades six through 12. The first group of residential athletes will be enrolled in Fall 2025. Additionally, San Diego FC will create a non-residential girls pathway at the academy.

The Right to Dream Academy offers a unique model of talent development via a holistic approach of character building, soccer development and focus on education. All enrolled, residential athletes will receive full five-year scholarships regardless of on-field performance. Upon completion of the project, San Diego FC offer a privately operated school combined with their residential soccer academy.

“This is a foundational moment for our club. Our performance center and Right to Dream Academy will enable us to develop future generations of world-class players across greater San Diego,” said Tom Penn, CEO of San Diego FC.

“This groundbreaking initiative reaffirms our commitment to create opportunities for young talent to flourish and our vision to become the epicenter of football excellence and innovation in North America.”

San Diego FC were announced as MLS’s 30th team in May during an event at SnapDragon Stadium, their future home venue. Their ownership group is led by businessman Mohamed Mansour and the Syucan Band of the Kumeyaay Nation.