The Target USA Cup youth soccer tournament celebrated its 35th year, and the third largest field in the history of the tournament. It also welcomed a new title sponsor, Target.
“It’s just an awesome experience for any youth soccer player,” said Barclay Kruse, chief communications officer with the National Sports Center. “In fact, this is the capstone experience for many soccer players. This will be the most memorable week of their entire youth soccer careers”
The event is the largest annual sports tourism event in Minnesota and has an economic impact of $36.4 million. The event is also the largest youth soccer tournament In the Western Hemisphere
“The tournament highlights 20 different countries, 22 different states, and five Canadian provinces,” said Kruse.
Team from countries including Brazil, Costa Rica, Haiti, Nigeria, Sweden and Japan are all competing, along with teams from California, Rhode Island, South Dakota and Texas. Teams from Canadian provinces including Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan are also competing.
“As far as international participation, we don’t have any new countries but we do have a new team from Liberia,” said Kruse. “It’s the first girls’ soccer team to travel outside of Liberia period.”
Most of the visiting teams stay in hotels, and some in the dorms and a small portion are at home stays.
All Target USA Cup games are free and open to the public. There are also volunteer opportunities for the tournament. For more information about the games, visit our website at northmetrotv.com.