The New England Revolution and Real Boston Rams (USL Premier Development League) have extended and expanded their partnership that makes the Rams the official PDL affiliate of the Revolution. The Rams, who are entering their second season, just won the 2013 PDL Rookie Franchise of the Year award in mid-December.
The affiliation, which was originally announced in April 2013, allows college-aged Revolution Academy youth team products the opportunity to play for the Rams during their PDL season. Beginning in 2014, Revolution Under-18 assistant coach - and Tufts University assistant coach - Hobie Hare will serve as the associate head coach of Real Boston Rams with Mike Madden.
Additional members of the Revolution Academy's youth teams' technical staff will also assist Hare and the Rams' staff to help oversee the Revolution players' on-going development during the summer months.
The agreement continues to allow college-aged New England Revolution Academy products to be rostered by the Rams, allowing the Revolution to continue their professional development and allow the players to remain on the team's Homegrown Protected List.
"We're pleased to continue this partnership with Real Boston Rams," Revolution general manager Michael Burns said. "We had a great first season in 2013 and we both saw positives to expanding this relationship. The affiliation allowed our college-aged players to play meaningful games close to home, and provided us the opportunity to monitor and assess them. We're hoping to roster more of our college-aged Academy players this year as we continue to build out our development model and the Rams will play a big part in that."
"We're delighted to expand our partnership with the New England Revolution," Real Boston Rams general manager John Barata said. "The Revolution is a class organization and we're proud that we'll continue to be part of the club's development plan. With our on-going relationship with the Revolution, Real Boston Rams has established itself as the premier developmental club in the Northeast. It is a harmonious relationship and we look forward to continued success in 2014."
"We are excited to add Revolution staff to our current Real Boston Rams coaching team," Real Boston Rams president Mike Madden said. "Having these two professional coaching staffs working together will benefit both organizations in player development."
This is a solid move for New England, who clearly saw the benefits of this agreement last year when they were able to have their college-level academy products join them for training in Foxboro during the summer months all while monitoring their progress with the Rams over the course of the season. For the Rams, they continue to have academy grown talent on their roster and get the added advantage of having Revolution coaching staff working with them closely during the season.
This past July we spoke to Jonathan Fonseca, Director of Operations and Media for the Rams, who explained to us that the Revs were closely monitoring several players including Providence College's Fabio Machado, who just recently helped the Friars to the 2013 NCAA College Cup tournament where they lost to finalists Maryland in the 2nd round. Also on that Providence squad was Dominik Machado (no relation), another Revs Academy product who had a successful Freshman season and will undoubtedly be on the Revolution's Homegrown shortlist over the next few years.
Other notable players include defender Jack Hilger and forward Cole DeNormandie, both of which currently attend and play for Boston College, who Fonseca told us were closely monitored by New England last season. This most recent announcement seems to indicate that the Revs will look to roster even more of their academy products on the Rams this upcoming season as they hope for the same amount of success that they saw in 2013 if not more.