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Lancaster Inferno to join USL Academy League

By Staff, 02/21/24, 5:00PM EST


A new opportunity for elite soccer players in the region

Lancaster, PA –  Lancaster Inferno FC is pleased to announce its acceptance into the USL Academy League. The club will be launching its U19 USL Girls Academy team this Fall featuring the area's top U15-U19 players. After announcing last December that Lancaster Inferno has joined the USL W League for its pre-professional women’s team, getting accepted into the USL Academy is another major milestone for the club. Read how Lancaster Inferno is taking pre-professional women’s soccer to new heights in 2024


“We are thrilled to have Lancaster Inferno FC compete in the Girls side of the USL Academy Cup this year. This will be the first step in Lancaster Inferno FC building out a broader women’s pathway that will be able to provide more opportunities for players and coaches in a very intentional way,”  said Carrie Taylor, USL Technical Director - Women’s Pathway


Geared towards top players within the U15 to U19 age range (2010-2006 birth years), the USL Academy model is unique in the player development landscape with a direct path to Inferno’s senior team.

This model allows identification and integration of elite youth players into a pre-professional environment at a younger age, giving them exposure to a higher level of play than they would normally experience, and access to the resources of the senior team. The development of players is enhanced by providing regionalized meaningful competition.

By moving forward with this model, the Inferno can deliver a new player development platform that collectively bridges the gap between its senior teams and youth teams. In doing so, the club will be able to integrate the top local players in the area into a pre-professional development environment, allowing players to chase their dream of playing at the professional level.

As the landscape of youth soccer continues to evolve, the USL Academy is a first-of-its-kind model designed to create the clearest path possible to professional soccer, with a direct & immediate connection to the local USL senior team.

“The USL has a long history of being innovators in the game and we’re proud to be a part of their Academy program,” said Executive Director Stephanie Cleaves. “This is a natural next step for our club to help players reach their goals.”

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