United Premier Soccer League Announces Arizona Expansion
Arizona based Barça Residency Academy will begin UPSL play in the 2020 Fall Season as a member of the Arizona Division.
The club will host its UPSL home games at Grande Sports World – Home of Barça Residency Academy in compliance with UPSL National Division I standards.
UPSL Vice President Christian Vallejos said, “We are extremely excited to welcome Barça Residency USA to the UPSL. The club has state-of-the-art facilities at Grande Sports World and coaches from FC Barcelona. We are very proud that Barça Residency Academy USA, a club that’s so successful at moving players on to the next level, is including the UPSL in their player development pathway.”
Barça Residency Academy is FC Barcelona’s youth residency soccer academy in the United States, a blossoming center for excellence in youth soccer development and education in the United States.
Read: BARCA ACADEMY KICKS OFF
Committed to competing at the highest levels within the U.S. soccer development platform, Barça Residency Academy U18 and U19 players will compete in the UPSL as Barça Residency USA, formed to compete exclusively in the UPSL.
The U18/19 players will also compete in the new MLS Elite Player Development Platform.
“We are delighted to be joining the UPSL for the upcoming season,” said Ged Quinn, Barça Residency Academy Director.
“Being a part of the largest professional development league within the USA will provide tremendous opportunities for our club … a true pathway for our players …”Ged Quinn, Barça Residency Academy Director
“There is a high level of talent and competition within the league and we believe that it will provide a true pathway for our players to help them achieve their goals competing at the highest level,” said Quinn.
“The UPSL platform provides a context where our players can continue to nurture their development as a soccer player and human being,” said Barça Residency Academy Technical Director Xavi Bravo.
Barça Residency USA can participate in the qualifying rounds for the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup through their affiliation and membership with the UPSL, the U.S. Soccer Federation (USSF) and the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA).
“Competing at a higher level and facing a different type of opposition will be a challenge for our players as well as for our Club, however, this challenge will bring out the best in us.”Xavi Bravo, Barça Residency Academy Technical Director
“Barca Residency USA is a tremendous addition to the UPSL’s Arizona Division. The club’s success in developing players is second-to-none right now in the United States,” said Luin Frazier, COO of UPSL.
“In support of their player development efforts, the UPSL provides Barca a platform for high-level competition at the top end of their organizational structure,” added Frazier. “While there aren’t many clubs like Barca Residency USA, we know that they will fit in nicely with our 300 plus member clubs across the country. We have high expectations for Barca Residency USA and are proud to welcome them to the UPSL.”
The only full-time residential academy program partnered with a top international professional team, Barça Residency Academy players live, train, and attend school on Grande Sports World’s campus that features on-site dormitories, Arizona State Preparatory High School, eight soccer fields, professional nutrition programming and a 58,000 square foot state-of-the-art athletic training facility.
The UPSL was formed in 2011 and currently includes more than 300 teams nationwide. The UPSL is the largest Pro Development League in North America.
Updated – originally published on October 6, 2020.