US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program


What is the US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program?


The US Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (ODP)  was formed in 1977 to identify a pool of players in each age group from which a National Team will be selected for international competition; to provide high-level training to benefit and enhance the development of players at all levels; and, through the use of carefully selected and licensed coaches, develop a mechanism for the exchange of ideas and curriculum to improve all levels of coaching.

The US Youth Soccer ODP Philosophy

To identify players of the highest caliber on a continuing and consistent basis, which will lead to increased success for the U.S. National Teams in the international arena.

What are the Benefits of Participating in US Youth Soccer ODP?

1. Development as a player. The opportunity to train and play with the best player's in one's age group.
2. Quality instruction from nationally licensed coaches.
3. Quality competition. Games against other state association ODP teams.
4. Exposure to regional and national team coaches.
5. The opportunity to represent one's state, region, or country in competition.
6. Exposure to college coaches.

The Delaware Olympic Development Program

In support of the national goals, the Delaware ODP program strives to give each and every Delaware player an opportunity to participate in the statewide ODP program. It is the express goal of the state program to

  • Identify the best players at each age level, and provide the best training possible in order to move players to the next level.
  • Provide them an opportunity to demonstrate their skills at the state and regional levels in a variety of different events as well as provide them the
    opportunity to be showcased for college coaching staff.

While it is ultimately the goal of the state program to have our state players represented in the regional pools and teams, this is by no means the exclusive goal of the DE ODP program. Equally important is our goal to provide exceptional training to all our state players and move these players to the next level in terms of both their skill set and competitive level. To this end, the DE ODP program strives to provide experienced coaching staff to its players, many of whom have extensive college level play and coaching experience. Commitment, diligence, preparedness, good attitudes and behavior are as important in this development process as soccer skill and  know-how are.

Each player and parent should understand that part of the ODP experience is not only the development of new and improved soccer skills but participation in a broad range of experiences contributing to the players emotional, maturational, and social development as well. The player will have the opportunity to meet highly skilled players from states throughout the Northeast. It is important for both the player and parent to realize that competition at the regional level is very tough and that not making the regional pool is not a negative. Helping your player to establish appropriate goals for his/her ODP experience is an important part of helping your player get everything out of this exciting opportunity. 


Who is Eligible?

Any soccer player who is a Delaware resident and in good standing with the DYSA is eligible for consideration in the ODP provided that he/she meets the age requirements for the established age groups. A player may try out in the state association in which he or she is eligible to be registered; a player may not try out for the ODP in more than one state association.

How are players selected?

Players are selected, in Delaware, on the basis of open tryouts, which are held in early fall. These tryouts are conducted by the state association coaches who are recognized for their ability to identify and train players with superior skills. 

Selection of these players is not an easy task. The state association head coach or State Coach has sole responsibility for final selections, but will, in most cases, be assisted in the selection process by several other qualified coaches from the club or league level. Players are evaluated on the four components that make up a soccer player: technique, tactics, fitness and athletic ability, psychological component (attitude).

For more Questions and Answers, please visit our ODP FAQs section.

Click here to read more about the 
Delaware Olympic Development Program