Anders Bordoy has been an important piece to the success of the Riverhounds Development Academy's (RDA) 2004 Boys team, and this week he'll have a chance to showcase his skills for coaches and scouts from the U.S. Soccer Federation.
Bordoy, 14, was invited to attend the U.S. Youth National Team's Identification Center this Wednesday in Obetz, Ohio, where players from the 2003 to 2006 age groups will participate in a one-day showcase that represents the first step toward reaching the USYNT player pool and, for a select few, being named to the Youth National Team.
The identification centers are held in cities around the country — all in locations with MLS or USL teams — and participation is by invitation only. While identification center events are not formal tryouts, they are organized and run by the USSF primarily for the purpose of selecting players to be brought in for future events, though college coaches also are invited to attend and observe.
"I was really excited about it when I found out. I had no idea," Bordoy said. "I'm kind of used to (the level of competition), but to be honest, there's a little bit of nerves. I've just got to go out and do what I do best."
Niko Katic, the coach of the RDA's 04 Boys, said Bordoy is deserving of the recognition for his contributions to a team that carries a 7-2 record in BoysECNL competition, putting them squarely in contention for a playoff spot just past the midway point of the season.
"It's very exciting for him to get the work recognized a little bit, and we're super-excited for Anders. He played very well during the fall; he was one of the better players out there," Katic said. "He's a left-footed player, very good, very technical and fast, quick. He knows the game very well, sees the game very well, can pass the ball, shoot and is a good dribbler, as well."
Bordoy is primarily a left winger or left midfielder for the RDA 04 Boys, meaning he often is involved in the attack but also carries some defensive responsibilities. Heading out to battle the high level of competition Wednesday in Ohio, he knows he will need to put all facets of his game on display.
"I like (playing the left side) because I can help my team defend and get clean sheets, but I can still dribble, get forward and cross, do everything when we attack," Bordoy said.
An eighth grader in the Kiski Area School District, Bordoy has been a part of the RDA program for three years. It's not the first individual honor for him, either, as he was selected last year for a U-14 national team in U.S. Club Soccer's id2 program that afforded him the chance to compete in Spain.
Between his overseas experience and his time with the RDA competing against the region's best in BoysECNL play, Bordoy sounds confident that he is ready for the level of play he will see in the Columbus suburbs this week.
"When your team is doing a really good job, it helps you, too," Bordoy said of the RDA 04 Boys' success. "When they're playing well, it allows you to get the ball more, and when they're getting in good spaces, you can play good balls to them, and they look good, too."
"For us (as coaches), that's what we're supposed to do," Katic said of Borday's invitation. "We need to keep getting our players these opportunities, and the more we do that, the better it is for the club and the whole area."
The USYNT Identification Center will be the first stop in a whirlwind week for Bordoy. His 04 Boys team is one of the RDA boys teams headed to Southern California this weekend to compete in the BoysECNL San Diego tournament, part of a full weekend of games for Hounds Academy teams coming off the Easter weekend break.