Sounders Insider

Michelle Akers at Starfire events May 10-11

This just in from Washington Youth Soccer

U.S. Women’s National Team legend Michelle Akers will visit the Washington Youth Soccer State Cup weekend May 10-11 at Starfire Sports. Akers, a Washington native named by FIFA as the Female Player of the Century, captured two FIFA World Cup championships and an Olympic gold medal during her illustrious career. Akers has resided in Georgia since her retirement, and is looking to return to the Washington soccer community and help motivate and inspire today’s young soccer players.

Akers will hang the championship and silver medals for the Under-15 through Under-18 Girls State Championship and Challenge Cup finals, be available for two autograph sessions and a media session, host a youth clinic with Seattle Sounders Women and speak during an open seminar to Washington Youth Soccer players, parents, coaches, referees and administrators. The full schedule of events can be found below.

Akers grew up in Shoreline and won several Washington Youth Soccer State Championships, two US Youth Soccer Region IV Championships and was twice a runner-up at the US Youth Soccer National Championships. Akers was also a member of Washington Youth Soccer Olympic Development Program (ODP), now called Elite Player Development (EPD), and earned High School All-American honors three times.

After her youth career, Akers moved on to the University of Central Florida where she was a four-time NCAA All-American and won the prestigious Herman Trophy.

A pioneer in women’s soccer worldwide, Akers was a member of the first U.S. Women’s National Team game ever played in 1985, and won the Golden Boot as the leading scorer in the inaugural FIFA Women’s World Cup in 1991 as she led Team USA to the trophy by scoring both goals in the championship match. Akers also helped guide the U.S. team to the 1996 FIFA Women’s World Cup title, the 1998 Goodwill Games gold medal, 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup silver medal, the 2000 Olympic Gold medal, and was awarded the FIFA Order of Merit in 1998 for her contributions to the game of soccer.

Akers finished her 14-year international career in 2000 with 153 appearances, scoring 105 goals and 36 assists, and was named to the US National Soccer Hall of Fame in 2004.

The Washington Youth Soccer State Championships are part of the US Youth Soccer National Championship Series, the oldest and most prestigious youth soccer national championship competition in the country. Winners of the State Championships will earn a place in the US Youth Soccer Region IV Championships June 16-22 in Albuquerque, N.M., where state champions from the 14 western states will square off to advance to the National Championships.

Likewise, the Washington Youth Soccer Challenge Cup is part of the US Youth Soccer Presidents Cup, designed for those teams seeking additional challenges to play against teams of similar abilities for a national title. The cup provides a progressive, competitive experience to teams that might not otherwise get the opportunity to participate in a series of unique experiences highlighting competition, camaraderie and community from the state to regional to national levels of US Youth Soccer. Champions from the Challenge Cup first divisions will advance to the US Youth Soccer Region IV Presidents Cup June 11-15 in Morgan Hill, Calif.

Michelle Akers Appearances

Schmetzer’s Sporthaus Autograph SessionFriday, May 9 | 6:00-7:30 pm Schmetzer’s Sporthaus Green Lake 77806 Aurora Ave. N Seattle, WA 98103

Washington Youth Soccer State Cup Autograph SessionSaturday, May 10 | 11:30 am – 1:00 pm Starfire Sports 14800 Starfire Way Tukwila, WA 98188 Starfire Parking Fee: $5

Washington Youth Soccer Media SessionSaturday, May 10 | 3:00-4:00 pm Starfire Sports For media credentials, email mike@washingtonyouthsoccer.org

Sounders Women Skills Clinic with Michelle AkersSaturday, May 10 | 2:00-3:00 pm Starfire Sports Pavilion Field Free for U-10 through U-16 Girls Limited to the first 50 who register

Washington Youth Soccer Seminar Akers to address players and coachesSunday, May 11 | 3:30-4:30 pm Starfire Sports Stadium Field Open to the public

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About Washington Youth Soccer - Washington Youth Soccer is the largest youth soccer organization in Washington and is the state's affiliate for US Youth Soccer, the largest youth sports organization in the United States and the most populous member of the United States Soccer Federation, the governing body for soccer in the United States. Washington Youth Soccer is the tenth largest membership in the nation; representing over 105,000 players (ages 4-19) and their families, 15,000 coaches on 12,000 teams and 6,500 referees in the state of Washington. Washington Youth Soccer’s mission is to foster the physical, mental and emotional growth and development of the State of Washington's youth through the sport of soccer at all levels of age and competition. To learn more visit WashingtonYouthSoccer.org.

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