By Matt Schwab
Special to Mustang Soccer
Outstanding Mustang Soccer U15 players Lizzie Vranesh and Layla Armas will soon be able to train and play in England as part of id2 National Selection Tours.
The id2 trip is historic for girls’ soccer because id2 international events previously only included male players. But now girls’ soccer is in the mix during a brilliant age for women’s soccer internationally.
Lizzie and Layla were selected for the big trip after competing in an ECNL All-Star competition at IMG Academy in Florida which featured All-Star teams from the West, East, South and Midwest. Mustang Soccer ECNL Director Mike Kelley coached the West side which advanced to the semifinals and fell in penalty kicks.
Kelley appreciates the skill and drive of Lizzie and Layla, both highly dedicated competitors. He knows they will represent Mustang Soccer very well in Europe.
“Lizzie and Layla are not only talented players, but they are very motivated and coachable kids,” Kelley said. “You can tell that soccer is a big part of their life that they truly enjoy, and this shows in their interaction with our staff and their teammates. We wish them the best of luck in England and congratulate them on everything they have accomplished so far, we know there is more to come!
From competitive and cultural perspectives, it figures to be an incredible trip. The id2 girls squad will have matches against Blackburn Rovers WJFC, Manchester City LFC U16, and Chelsea FC U16, along with taking sightseeing trips to Windsor Castle, The Tower of London, The Houses of Parliament, Buckingham Palace, and Old Trafford Stadium, home of famed Manchester United. Tour dates are March 13-24, which includes a brief domestic camp in northern New Jersey for the first couple days.
The US Club Soccer’s id2 National Identification and Developmental Program provides an opportunity for elite players to be identified, developed and scouted for inclusion in U.S. Soccer’s national team programs. Id2 program directors are Gerry McKeown (boys) and Tricia Taliaferro (girls).
The id2 program is an Olympic Development Program approved by the United States Olympic Committee and U.S. Soccer Federation. Premier International Tours is assisting with travel logistics.