USL News Release
Friday, October 12, 2012
TAMPA, Fla. – The 2013 USL PRO Combine is set for January 24-27, 2013 and once again will be held at the world-class facilities of IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. The USL PRO Combine provides an opportunity for elite men’s soccer players to showcase their talents for both domestic and international scouts and professional coaches.
The annual event, now in its seventh year, will feature 102 of the top players from North America and overseas hoping to land a professional contract. To date, more than 150 participants (including 10 from 2012) have gone on to sign professional contracts with USL, MLS and international squads since the debut of the combine in 2006. The event attracts top talent from throughout North America, with a majority of the participants coming from the PDL, North America’s leading developmental league for men’s professional soccer.
The USL PRO Combine will be led by USL National Technical Director Peter Mellor, who will oversee a comprehensive curriculum that challenges participants while providing coaches with the proper environment for evaluation. Coaches expected to participate in the event will include MLS staff coaches and several current PDL head coaches.
“Having the Combine at IMG Academy elevated the level of the event last year, so we’re excited to head back to Bradenton in 2013,” Mellor said. “IMG Academy provides the players with a professional environment both on and off the field, giving them the best opportunity possible to show the coaches in attendance that they’re ready for the professional level. That’s the ultimate goal – to help these players take the next step.”
Past beneficiaries of the event include 2012 USL PRO Rookie of the Year finalist Bryce Taylor of the Wilmington Hammerheads, who was scouted by the Hammerheads at last year’s event. He follows in the footsteps of 2011 USL PRO Rookie of the Year Luke Mulholland (Wilmington) and 2012 USL PRO Rookie of the Year Jose Cuevas (Charleston), who both participated in the 2011 Combine. The 2012 scoring leaders for USL PRO’s Dayton Dutch Lions – Eli Garner and Gibson Bardsley – were signed following their performances at the 2012 USL PRO Combine.
Members of the 2012 PDL All-League Team
will receive special invitations to participate. Other players hoping to participate in the USL PRO Combine will be selected based on their playing background and their soccer achievements. The application will be available through the “Events” tab on uslsoccer.com starting on October 15 with a deadline of December 7. Participants will receive local transportation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, lodging, and uniforms.
“I’m pleased we’re able to invite the PDL All-League Team players, as they’ve proven they deserve the opportunity through their performances during the 2012 season,” Mellor said.
Goalkeepers will report and begin training for the 2013 USL PRO Combine on Thursday, January 24, followed by field players on Friday, January 25. The event concludes on Sunday, January 27.
IMG Academy, a division of IMG Worldwide, the global sports, fashion and media company, is the world’s largest and most advanced multi-sport training and education complex. For more than 30 years, IMG Academy has helped countless youth, adult, collegiate and professional athletes reach their full potential in and out of sport, by providing world-class coaching, tailored programs and professional facilities within an energetic environment across a 450-acre campus.