Who’s the best?
It’s a question that often comes up in the youth soccer landscape with so many teams and clubs scattered across different regional and national competitions and leagues.
The Best Of Cup hopes to bring some clarity to that question with a weekend invite-only event featuring some of the region’s best teams playing in MLS Next, ECNL, National Academy League and US Youth Soccer-affiliated leagues.
The first edition of the cup will feature boys teams playing at WSFS Bank Sportsplex in Chester, Pa. and Chase Fieldhouse in Wilmington, Del. this weekend, Feb. 9-11.
“It’s going to be super competitive having primarily MLS and ECNL teams and some NAL and USYS teams,” said Shane Rineer, Director of Tournaments and Events for C2 Sports, which is organizing the event. “Just as it says on our website, it’s about who’s best and getting teams together to play competitive games.”
The three-day event includes an All-Star game of uncommitted players at all four age groups: U15, U16, U17 and U19 and flights in each age group. In addition to bragging rights, there will be trophies for the flight winners.
The Philadelphia Union, Sporting Athletic, Real Jersey, Penn Fusion, Hex FC and Lehigh Valley United are among the clubs with teams competing. Teams hail from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Texas and Virginia.
“We’re putting top clubs against each other from different leagues, seeing how they compete and what teams and players shine,” Rineer said. “But we’re also providing this other opportunity for uncommitted players to get seen by college coaches and scouts.”
The Uncommitted Teams will be chosen by a staff of top college and club coaches who will select players from teams participating in the tournament and from other teams across the nation.
“College coaches really like being able to go a game where all of the players haven’t committed yet,” Rineer said.
C2 Sports plans to add girls teams to the competition in the future.