LaLiga Promises International Tournament Kicks Off
The first day of the LaLiga Promises Tournament has kicked off as top academy teams from Spain meet their American competition for a weekend of great youth soccer action.
LaLiga Promises, the international U12 youth soccer tournament, has groomed young players-turned-stars like Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique, Fernando Torres, Dani Carvajal, Cesc Fabregas, Juan Mata and Thomas Muller.
Youth Soccer News: The 21st LaLiga Promises International Tournament kicked off in the New York / New Jersey area with the prestigious U12 event crowning champions on Sunday.
The youth soccer tournament started on Friday, June 23rd with matches NYCFC taking on FC Barcelona. The Spanish academy team defeated the MLS academy 1-0.
LaLiga, the organizing body of top-flight Spanish soccer with over 1.6 billion fans globally,, and the Jose Ramon de la Morena Foundation, organize this third annual international tournament.
This is one of the most prestigious U-12 competitions in the world.
Bringing together the world’s finest young soccer players to the New York City area and give them a platform to pursue their dreams through sport — that is the purpose of this youth soccer tournament. Today’s soccer icons including Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique, Fernando Torres, Dani Carvajal, Cesc Fabregas, Juan Mata and Thomas Muller all graced these tournaments as budding stars of the future.
“LaLiga Promises is an internationally acclaimed competition with a rich heritage,” says Javier Tebas, President of LaLiga. “The sport continues to thrive in the USA market and we are proud to showcase the best of youth soccer from around the world through the lens of LaLiga and its standards of excellence.”
Twelve teams from six countries will play 25 matches across two fields over the weekend. The U12 teams include Real Madrid CF (Spain), Club Atlético de Madrid (Spain), FC Barcelona (Spain), Sevilla FC (Spain), Villarreal CF (Spain), Valencia CF (Spain), New York City FC (USA), Ironbound SC (USA), Club America (Mexico), FC Internazionale Milano (Italy), SL Benfica (Portugal), and Nacional De Medellin (Colombia).
“In Spain, the U12 age bracket is very special. It is the last year youth soccer players play 7×7. At U13, our players move to 11v11 and that is a very big step for the kids. The LA LIGA Promises focuses on this important age,” says Carlos Perez – Country Manager, LaLiga USA.
The six youth teams have arrived in the USA just days before the competition in the USA — after competing in the same tournament in Spain. The youth team from FC Barcelona claimed the LaLiga Promises crown in Spain after a commanding performance on the field, crushing Atletico in a 6-1 triumph.
“It is good the US academy teams to compete against our teams, ” says Perez. “The USA is one of the biggest soccer markets in the world. It has huge potential — and U.S. Soccer and the MLS are doing a good job at raising the level of the game.”
“It is just a question of time … there is huge potential here,” says Perez.
The event is being held on the soccer fields in Newark, NJ, at Riverbank Park and Independence Park.
The LA LIGA Promises U12 competition not only promotes the values of Spanish football, but also provides young players with an opportunity to be noticed by top talent scouts, former players and club executives.
The tournament is organized in partnership with the El Larguero Foundation, an institution boasting over 20 years of experience in youth soccer tournaments.
Photo Credit: LaLiga Promises International Tournament