Atlanta United today announced Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta (Children’s) as the club’s official pediatric healthcare system and the naming partner of its new training ground.
“We are very excited to announce the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground,” said club president Darren Eales. “Children’s is a well-known and respected organization that shares many of Atlanta United’s core values, especially involving community support. Children’s will be an invaluable asset for our club with the expertise to care for our academy teams as well as our younger first team players.”
Children’s will be the official pediatric healthcare system of Atlanta United and the official pediatric sports medicine program of Atlanta United. One of the nation’s largest pediatric healthcare systems, Children’s is home to a nationally ranked sports medicine program that uses leading-edge research to keep athletes, from pre-teens to adolescents, in top physical shape. As the largest health care provider for young people in Georgia, Children’s offers access to more than 60 pediatric specialties and programs and is ranked among the top children’s hospitals in the country.
“We are excited about this relationship with Atlanta United and to be a part of a new experience for young athletes in Atlanta,” said Donna Hyland, President and CEO, Children’s. “Children’s and Atlanta United want to make a difference in the lives of families and make sure kids get to stay where they belong – on the playing field.”
The $60 million, state-of-the-art training center, due for completion in the spring of 2017, will be home to the Atlanta United first team and academy teams and will also house Atlanta United front office and technical staff. The club will utilize the facility for training, performance analysis, nutrition, fitness, rehabilitation and elite youth development.
The Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground will not only serve as a primary recruiting tool for prospective professional players, but will provide academy players with an aspirational environment to learn and train with the first team. Launched in August 2016, the Atlanta United Academy has achieved immediate success with the U18 and U16 squads ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the country respectively and twenty academy players having been called up internationally.
“We have an elite academy program that has already seen two players move up to the first team with Andrew Carleton and Chris Goslin,” said Atlanta United Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra. “The relationship with Children’s and the ability for our young players to train at a world-class facility like the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground will take our academy programs to the next level.”
In addition to serving as headquarters for Atlanta United, the Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Training Ground will host national and international soccer clubs visiting Atlanta for tournaments to be held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. It will also be used as a base for grass roots soccer initiatives including coach education and referee training.
On Thursday, March 2, Atlanta United will partner with Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Scottish Rite for a fun-filled day of soccer as part of Atlanta United’s March to Soccer Week leading up to the club’s first match. Atlanta United players will participate in activities including FIFA play, foosball, inflatables, crafts and giveaways.