WHIPPANY, N.J. - Over thirty teams from across the metro area came together over two days in mid-March to compete in the inaugural Red Bulls RDS Winter Invitational. Hosted at the New York Red Bulls training facility in Whippany, NJ, some of the best young 2007 and 2008 birth years battled out to some incredibly competitive 7v7 games over a weekend of fantastic soccer.
Run as a preseason event for the RDS Regional Teams, numerous clubs from the local area, including SUSA, NJ Elite, SDFC, Albertson and Brooklyn Italians joined the Red Bulls pre-academy teams for this cost-free tournament. With each team competing in four games lasting twenty-five minutes apiece, teams had an opportunity to face off against competition from a variety of regions that they would not normally get the opportunity to play against.
Recent snowstorms had created snowbanks surrounding the facility, limiting spectator space. As such, the decision was made to play the tournament behind closed doors, therefore creating in an environment very much about the players. Teams also had the luxury of playing on the turf fields adjacent to the pitches which First Team players Bradley Wright Phillips, Tyler Adams and co. train on a daily basis. In addition the kids had the opportunity to use locker rooms within the academy building giving the players a true first-class experience.
“The New York Red Bulls Academy was happy to host many other metro area teams for our RDS Winter Invitational, Red Bulls Academy Director David Longwell said. “The quality 7v7 showed the promise of the hotbed of talent this area possesses. We want to continue to show our academy to be the best, in not just the area, but the nation.”
Finally, we would like to thank all the teams that participated in the tournament and are looking forward to hosting similar events in the future.