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Dallas Cup

One of the Top International Youth Soccer Tournaments in the World

The Dallas Cup is one of the most highly regarded international youth soccer tournaments in the US, and attracts the youth teams of some of the top professional clubs in the world. Many youth soccer experts think it is the best youth soccer tournament held anywhere.

The U 19 Super Group bracket, in particular, is deemed an important proving ground for the youth teams of some of the most famous clubs in the world. Spanish giants Real Madrid, as well as Manchester United of the English Premier League, and AC Milan of Italy's Serie A have all sent their top youth players to compete in it over the years.

South American clubs like Sao Paulo of Brazil and Boca Juniors of Argentina have also entered their youth teams. The 2011 edition of the tournament brings to Dallas the youth teams of Arsenal and Barcelona, two of the top clubs in the world as regards to their youth development programs.

Dallas Cup Logo

Now in its 34th year, the Dallas Cup was founded by the Texas Longhorns Soccer Club as a way to repay the hospitality shown to its traveling teams over the years by host clubs all over Europe. The event soon outgrew the club, however, and today it exists as a stand-alone tournament that attracts about 184 teams each year. But it's the caliber of play, rather than the size of the tournament, that makes the Dallas Cup so special.

Games are played at Pizza Hut Park, the $80 million state-of-the-art soccer complex in Frisco, TX that also serves as the home field of the MLS team FC Dallas. The 17 full-sized fields and 21,000 seat stadium are enough to accommodate all games at a single location.

The event is always held between Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday, a time of year that has long been a big week for youth soccer tournaments throughout Europe. That means that, over the years, organizers have been able to attract many of the top youth teams from across the Atlantic.

40% of participating teams hail from overseas, with another 40% coming from throughout the US and the remainder being local Dallas area teams. Famous players who have competed over the years include Raul, David Beckham, Landon Donovan and Giovanni Dos Santos.

With college coaches and professional scouts from all over the world descending on the tournament in droves, it's certainly fair to say that the Dallas Cup is a very important youth soccer tournament. If your team is good enough to compete, and fortunate enough to be accepted, a good showing here might just be a stepping-stone to bigger and better things.

Quick Facts About the Dallas Cup

  • The event attracts an average of 160,000 spectators throughout the tournament week, including 17,000 for the Opening Day stadium games at Pizza Hut Park.
  • Over 1,600 volunteers help with the running of the event, contributing a cumulative total of 13,000 hours of their time
  • Only about 15% of the 180 participating teams come from the local Dallas area. That means that over 4,000 participating players and spectators are flying in, using 8,200 hotel room nights and consuming over 130,000 restaurant meals.
  • Media coverage of the event includes 3,300 column inches of newspaper and magazine coverage, 45 minutes of local TV coverage, 120 minutes of national and international TV coverage and over ten hours of live radio coverage.
  • Up to 900 international players, some of tem stars of the future, take part in the tournament each year.

Click the link for more information about this yearÂ’s Dallas Cup, click here.

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