ECNL National Championship and AGM set to begin; ECNL announces long-term partnership with Nike
SEATTLE (July 12, 2010) – The inaugural ECNL National Championship is set to kick-off in Seattle at 60 Acres Soccer Park on Thursday, July 15.
All 120 teams from the 40 current ECNL clubs will compete for age group championships, promotion and relegation between the "A" and "B" flights in each age group for the 2010-11 season, and an overall ECNL National Club Champion. Each team has been assigned to a play-off group based on their position in the final ECNL regular-season standings, and each team will play three games over three days.
"The ECNL National Championship is the culmination of the season, and will be one of the most exciting youth soccer events of the year," said ECNL Vice President Doug Bracken. "More than 2000 of the best female soccer players from all over the country will be competing in one place with so much on the line. It will be a special atmosphere that the players should really enjoy."
The ECNL National Championship will begin July 14 with the ECNL Annual General Meeting. Each club, including the 12 new clubs accepted for the 2010-11 season, will be in attendance to discuss ECNL operations, structure and player development. U.S. U-23 Women's National Team Coach Bill Irwin will also deliver a presentation at the AGM on National Team programming and issues in female player development.
The ECNL National Championship will also mark the beginning of a long-term sponsorship between the ECNL and Nike Soccer. Nike will be the official apparel, footwear and equipment sponsor of the ECNL for the next three seasons, and will have a significant presence at all ECNL events moving forward.
"We are tremendously excited to announce this relationship with Nike," said ECNL President Christian Lavers. "Nike will be able to deliver significant value to the ECNL in terms of marketing and promotion of our events, support for the ECNL Player Identification Program, support for our member clubs, and so much more. This partnership will help insure that the ECNL continues to lead the way for elite youth female player development in the United States over the next several years."
“The Elite Clubs National League takes competitive girls youth soccer to a new level,” said Joe Elsmore, Nike’s Director of Soccer Sports Marketing. “Nike is proud to partner with the top elite girls league in America.”
The ECNL is sanctioned by US Club Soccer.
About the ECNL:
The ECNL is a non-profit national youth soccer league founded in 2009 to provide the best possible developmental environment for American female youth soccer players through the creation of the highest level of national competition and an identification and development program to provide an avenue for players to participate in U.S. Soccer's National Teams. The 2009-10 season is the ECNL’s inaugural season. Each of the 40 member clubs in 2009-10 field a team in the U-15, U-16 and U-17 age groups, each competing for the ECNL National Championship, the ECNL National Club Championship and promotion and relegation between flights. The ECNL is sanctioned by US Club Soccer. For more information, visit http://www.eliteclubsnationalleague.com.
NIKE, Inc. based near Beaverton, Oregon, is the world's leading designer, marketer and distributor of authentic athletic footwear, apparel, equipment and accessories for a wide variety of sports and fitness activities. Wholly-owned Nike subsidiaries include Cole Haan, which designs, markets and distributes luxury shoes, handbags, accessories and coats; Converse Inc., which designs, markets and distributes athletic footwear, apparel and accessories; Hurley International LLC, which designs, markets and distributes action sports and youth lifestyle footwear, apparel and accessories; and Umbro Ltd., a leading United Kingdom-based global football (soccer) brand. For more information, visit www.nikebiz.com.
About US Club Soccer:
US Club Soccer is a non-profit organization whose mission is to develop competitive club soccer in the United States. A member of the United States Soccer Federation since July 2001, US Club Soccer has grown to include member clubs and leagues in all 50 states. In addition to sanctioning and administering tournaments, leagues and other competitions as well as offering a range of programs for its members, US Club Soccer annually conducts the National Cup and the National Collegiate Showcase. US Club Soccer also directs its own player identification and development program – id2.
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