ODP Soccer Tryouts
The Road to the Youth National Soccer Team
The statistics represented in the pyramid illustrate the pool of girls soccer players in the U.S. who are eligible for participation in the ODP process to make the national team.
ODP Girls Soccer Statistics FAQs
There can be anywhere from 100 to 300 players trying out for a particular age group or gender at the district and state levels of girls ODP soccer tryouts. The competition and pool of players is widely dependent on your geography. There are 55 USYS state associations because 5 states because of a vast geography and significant player pools. The 5 states are New York, Pennslyvania, Texas, Ohio and California.
Only 23 players are selected for the final state team.
The number of ODP districts varies by geography and player population for each state. As you can imagine, the districts and in North Dakota are quite different than in Massachusetts. Some states like Florida have a very clearly communicated map of the districts and sub-regions.
States vary in participation. Younger age groups are more competitive. Ten to 25 percent advance to the state team.
At the regional level, the best of the best are identified. Seven percent of ODP players make a regional team.
One-tenth of 1 percent of the total player population make the Youth National Soccer Team.
The number of ODP districts varies by geography and player population for each state.
Where Do Girls ODP Region 1 Players Come From?
The map below shows the states represented by players currently in the girls U14-U18 region pools.
Discovering Greatness at the Berkshire Invitational
Attending an inclusive and welcoming environment focused on player development is a great way to gain the skills required for a long soccer career. Development camps like the Berkshire Soccer Academy place the focus on what skills are developed. Many of the girls that attend the Invitational are preparing to attend ID camps where the primary purpose is to get noticed and selected for a team (checkout our tips to get noticed at tryouts). Before asking a young athlete to perform in front of new coach and with random players, it’s wise to have a similar experience in a more development focused program. That’s what the Invitational is. It’s easy to gain confidence and make friends because we combine great training with mental skills and fun camp activities.
Preparing to Become an Olympian.
So you’ve got a great soccer player who has a passion for the game and is often identified (or ID’d) as a potentially elite player. Often times, your emerging player is asked to “play up” one or two birth years. For many girls soccer players, this high performance track follows a pathway through club soccer and various touch points with the Olympic Development Program (ODP).
Many inexperienced soccer parents and coaches are puzzled by the tryouts, progression, hierarchy, structure, benefits and pitfalls of pursing acceptance into ODP. Furthermore, there is often a murky determination of what each level of progress in ODP means.
History of ODP Soccer
The U.S. Youth Soccer Olympic Development program goes way back to 1977, when it was created to identify the highest-caliber players in each age group to assemble a National team for international competition. Since then, it’s become the most-traveled path to the top of the soccer world. Players like two-time Olympic gold medalist Abby Wambach credit ODP soccer for their early success.
ODP Soccer – How it Works
ODP girls soccer tryouts begin at a local level with a district or state tryout, depending on a state’s player population. If the state has a larger population, the athlete will begin with a district tryout, while athletes in states with smaller populations go straight to state-level tryouts.
State teams train together and compete in regional tournaments before advancing to regional level tryouts. State players are then selected to one of four regional teams.
Regional teams are selected and trained by ODP region staff. If a player makes the regional team, U.S. Youth Soccer hands the player off to U.S. Soccer on the national level.
National youth teams are selected.
02/26/2021 Update – For additional girls soccer commentary from US Youth Soccer expert Sam Snow watch our new series with Sam Snow.