If the Development Academy playoffs were to begin today, only the New England Revolution's U-19 team would qualify.
But as the region's sole Major League Soccer academy, there's far more to the club than earning playoff spots at the June 17-29 event in San Diego, Calif.
Chief among them is developing a youth player who can earn a Homegrown Player deal, much like 17-year-old midfielder Nicolas Firmino (Somerville, Mass.) did in late November. And while a significant chunk of Revs players never sign with the first team, director of youth development Bryan Scales hopes the teams keep trending upwards.