SA United 96 Boys IASA at the 2011 Sports Source Showcase Tournament in Dallas TX
with IASA International Director Brian Haley.
SA United is a proud partner of the Richmond International Academic and Soccer Academy (IASA). The IASA program allows players from the US and all over the world to be based in the North of England, to gain a full American degree and most excitingly the opportunity to train, play and live as professional soccer players. Led by a team of highly experienced coaches and ex professional players, the RIASA program offers seven teams playing in the North England semi professioanl leagues as well as in the top University league in Great Britain. In addition to this the top players also play bi-weekly friendly games against the reserve teams from professional English football clubs such as Manchester City, Leeds United, York City and Bradford City. Since the program began in the fall of 2010 several players have already been offered full professional contracts with teams based in England, malta and Finland respectively.
SA United will be representing the RIASA Academy at the North American Club level as a feeder program for the ‘1st team’. This is the first program of its kind and SA United can now offer their players not only a path way into American university system but also into the European professional game for the right players. Players from SA United could one day be playing in the English Premier league!
SA Uniteds top boys teams at the U15s - U18s will be known as the SA United RIASA teams.
We will continue to showcase all of our players to universities in the USA. Not every player will be selected to attend the English based Academy when they graduate high school. The RIASA affiliation will continue to strengthen our relationships with the top college showcase tournaments and will lead to higher levels of exposure for our players looking to stay in the US and to attain scholarships at top soccer programs at the collegiate level.
This is a magnificent opportunity for SA United players and we are looking forward to continuing to help our players achieve their goals of playing at the highest levels possible.
To learn more about this exciting partnership please view the slideshow and video below
Director of Coaching, Jay Sparrow is the Head Scout in South Texas for IASA, International Academic and Soccer Academy based in England. All players in the SA United Senior program will be considered for this once in a life time opportunity.
‘We have been in talks with several English based clubs and Academies over the past several months. We want to be able to offer our players the very best opportunities should they wish to pursue their dreams of playing professional soccer. This is an excellent opportunity for players wanting to study and play abroad, offering them the opportunity to be put in front of some of the best club players and scouts in the world’ Jay Sparrow.
The Richmond International Academic and Soccer Academy allows students the best of both worlds: a top quality academic program while living and playing in a true football culture. The UK is a natural fit for the North American soccer player both culturally and for living with the best league in the world and the excitement that brings on a year round basis. It may provide an exit route into the professional game at some level, for some students, as they will be continually showcased against top professional academies.
What our Scouting Representative does. Our scouting representatives carefully observe the local and regional soccer scene for outstanding talent. We will assist the scouting representative in contacting qualified recruits. The scouting representative then contacts the interested athletes and their families and presents the RIASA program.
Showcase Opportunities Premier, Championship and League 1 & 2 Showcase Opportunities for RIASA Players RIASA will play against Premier League, Championship, and League One & Two Professional Youth Academy Teams throughout the Year. RIASA has developed links with the following youth academies for its teams to play against and be seen such as; Manchester United, Carlisle United, Middleborough, Shrewsbury Town, Nott's County, Leeds United, Doncaster Rovers, York City & Sunderland representing teams from the Premier League to League Level.
There will be a minimum of 16 showcase games against professional youth academy teams; in addition to regular Saturday league games. RIASA players will play for RIASA/Richmond University in the top amateur tier of English football, which is part of the 'football' pyramid system. RIASA players will also be eligible to play in the English College League during the week as well as eligible to play for semi professional teams should these teams seek to employ them. Visas allow players to work for 20 hours per week giving them access to be paid to play in semi professional leagues if good enough and if they so wish.