Holiday Training Tips
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
For young athletes, there is always a good amount of downtime over the holidays. This is a perfect time to work on your technical game and push yourself to be sharper in game situations. The weeks and days after I regularly trained on my own, I always performed better.  I felt confident that I had put the time in and the act of repeating a skill over and over until I perfected it, made me sharper in high-pressure situations. Everyone has access to a ball and perhaps a basement or garage wall they can hit the ball against. I encourage you to spend 30 minutes with the ball each day. As some ..read more
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College Recruitment Advice to Parents and Players
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
This weekend, I had the pleasure of working with some really high level 8th grade girls who all play for Development Academy teams. For those of you who aren't familiar with the Development Academy, it is an elite national player development program that was created this year by US Soccer and is designed to maximize youth player development. This program, in general, is where you would likely find the most elite youth soccer players in the country.  Since the girls had a game this weekend, we didn't do anything that would be too taxing to the body. I put together a session that ..read more
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The Importance of Soccer Specific Training
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
I get asked all the time, why I think my game improved so much in college. It's a good question because I did improve and mature in a big way throughout my college career. The truth is I used the summer months to focus on my game and achieve the goals I sought out to accomplish as a young girl. When I was little I dreamt of playing on the national team and representing my country in the World Cup and Olympics. Every summer throughout middle school, HS and college, I immersed myself in the game by attending World Class Soccer Camp for 7-8 weeks. My days were spent working on all aspects of ..read more
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Post Tour Reflection
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
For the past four summers, I've had the amazing opportunity to work and tour with some of the best soccer clubs in the world. I get to see these clubs compete in some of the biggest stadiums in the country as well as observe how these coaches and players prepare for their upcoming seasons. "The Tour" is quite the dichotomy for me. It is stressful, exhausting, exhilarating, exciting, and, at the same time, one of the most calming and teachable moments of the year for me... very strange, I know. :-) "The Tour" - aka The International Champions Cup (ICC) - is an event that attracts the best socce ..read more
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The Importance of Nutrition Part II
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
Throughout my late twenties I found myself going to doctor after doctor for all my different mysterious ailments. Once my back hurt so badly I swore I had something seriously wrong with it but an MRI showed I was perfectly fine. In my late twenties I also had two knee scopes thinking I had done some serious damage to my knee only to find out how impressed the surgeon was with the health of my knees.  One day I googled my symptoms as a whole and found articles on athletes with autoimmune conditions. I read about what Venus Williams, Novak Djokovic, and Shannon Boxx went through and it ..read more
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Why I Stress the Importance of Nutrition to My Soccer Players
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
When I was a senior in college playing soccer, I was at the top of my game. I graduated college having been a first team All-American and a U23 US National team pool player. I was picked up by two teams in Europe and played professionally in France and Germany. Unfortunately while I was in Europe my performance on the field was deteriorating and I was fatigued all the time. I didn't feel as strong or as fast and I wasn't executing the things I had always executed on the field. As my seasons progressed in Europe, I wasn't the same player I was when I finished my 2004 Fall season at Princet ..read more
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What is the most important thing to focus on in the recruitment process?
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
As a former college coach and recruiter, I've been approached by many parents to help them navigate the women's college soccer recruitment process. It seems that more and more parents and kids are overwhelmed and stressed by the possibility that they won't get recruited or receive a scholarship. My advice to parents and players is to focus on the things that are within your control. Focus on making sure coaches understand your genuine interest in their program by being proactive in the process and train to be the best player you can possibly be. Simply put, coaches want players that want to be ..read more
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Quality Practice Makes Perfect
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
As a former college soccer coach, I've spent countless hours observing the highest level high school soccer players at college showcases. This led to coaching many players that went on to play pro soccer or were invited into national team soccer camps. I've seen so many different levels of players with an array of strengths. However, I have given a lot of thought to the technical ability of all the players I've coached and evaluated over the years. This is the one aspect of the game that can be controlled. Speed, height, and athleticism are all things that are to a large extent out of their co ..read more
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For Love of the Game
Champions League Soccer Academy Blog
by Esmeralda Negron
1y ago
Today marks a milestone for me...I never thought I would be a blogger!  Three years ago I decided to start a side business as I was coaching full-time at Princeton University. I wanted to work with kids in the Princeton community and share my passion for the game with them. Champions League Soccer Academy started as a side project and has since blossomed into a successful supplemental soccer training academy based in New Jersey. Since I started the soccer academy in 2013, I've witnessed the tremendous growth of so many of my soccer players. Players have moved up to ECNL clubs, highe ..read more
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