Development Philosophy

The foundation of the Premier Youth Academy is the highly successful and worldwide recognized Dutch Development Philosophy, ranked by FIFA in the highest category of quality. Dutch Lions FC will work with full time experienced coaches only to guarantee top player development on the technical and tactical level. The key objective is to develop young players as much as possible and have several players from the Dayton region become professional soccer players in our Men’s or Women’s Professional team, the MLS and also potentially Europe.

To guarantee the quality of the Academy the Dutch Lions FC have established a partnership with Dutch Premier League club FC Twente.

Dutch Lions FC works with a Coaching Manual to make sure that all coaches train, play and coach their teams the same way as far as game tactics and player development. So the quality of the coaching stays the same and does not mainly depend on the Coach. Also integrated in the Academy are video analysis, individual coach-player evaluations, individual coach-parent evaluations and a mentoring program with our Men’s and Women’s team players.

We believe our unique combination of technical, tactical, physical and mental development will give kids (and their parents) a better chance to develop themselves as much as possible. And through our academy system, USL PDL teams (Cincinnati and Dayton),  the partnerships with the Columbus Crew (MLS), FC Cincinnati (USL PRO) and FC Twente (Premier League the Netherlands) provide a gateway to professional soccer.

Player Development Model Dutch Lions FC

  • Age 5-8 Skills/games/fun
  • Age 9-11 Advanced skills and Basic game tactics (introduction video analysis)
  • Age 12-13 Advanced game tactics and Learn how to train
  • Age 14-15 Train to grow
  • Age 16-18 Train to win
  • Age 18+ Train to excel

All coaches in the Premier Academy are full time and have a UEFA B or C license or are professional players that are in the process of obtaining this license. All coaches in the Amateur Academy have a minimum of UEFA C license or are professional players that are in the process of obtaining this license. There will be a lot of Dutch coaches in our Academy.

What do parents say?

“One if the biggest benefit of the DL academy is we are a big family. The DL staff supports each player on and off the field. The academy players support the men’s and women’s team. We been with the Dutch Lions since they started and the amount if support my daughter receives is amazing and her skills grow every year! Highly recommend soccer academy!!”

— Jennifer Smith, parent of Cheyenne

“When people ask me what makes the Dayton Dutch Lions different than other soccer clubs, sometimes I don’t know where to begin. It isn’t just about your child, or your child’s team, it is so much more than that. You really are becoming part of a family. Not only do my daughters’ coaches care about the development of their soccer skills, they show they care about their education and the players as individuals. I love the fact that this “orange family’ supports other teams in the academy, not just their own. It is not unusual to see families go to games to support one another, even if their child isn’t playing. I often see coaches stay at the fields for several hours to watch other academy teams. To have another coach compliment my child on a game well played is something they will always remember. When you add the experience of having the professional men and women’s team as mentors and getting to cheer them on at the pro games, the Dutch Lions cannot be beat.”

— Julie Takahashi, parent of Camlyn and Grace

“Being part of the Dayton Dutch Lions FC youth academy has been a great experience for my kids. We have been part of this organization since their first year, and although it was a good program from the beginning, it continues to improve. They are able to offer professional coaches who take a personal interest in the development of each player, as well as access to the Dutch Lions FC professional teams who serve as great role models; not to mention the club’s affiliation with both the Columbus Crew and FC Twente! I have seen huge growth in my kids skills and their confidence, both on and off the field. For all of these reasons, and more, Dayton Dutch Lions FC truly is the area’s best option, and undeniably the ‘Gateway to Professional Soccer’!”

— Heidi Fosberg, parent of Jetta, Gage and Bradley

“The Dayton Dutch Lions has become a part of our family, we believe in their philosophy for the art of soccer. Their positive attitude towards the future makes us feel secure for our children to keep improving and accomplishing the necessary skills to succeed not only in the sport of soccer but in their personal life with the discipline and encouragement impart from the coaches and the vision of the club. There are milestones to climb but we believe that the Dayton Dutch Lions are becoming a leader in the community and will excel due to the compromise and dedication of their staff.“

— The Obrecht Family, parents of Gaven and Paige

“My family joined the Dayton Dutch Lions four years ago, and we have had a great experience. The benefits of being members of the DL Academy include professional coaching, merit based play, and appropriate team assignments. The club’s emphasis on technical and tactical skills instead of the usual punt and run approach to soccer produces better players and teams. Our boys have improved tremendously due to the excellent training. We have also really enjoyed watching the pro team games, and meeting the players!”

— The Oliss Family , parents of Liam Oliss and Terry Oliss

“We first experienced the Lions’ coaching philosophy at one of their summer  youth camps. We were very impressed with the technical approach to fundamental skills and the tactical approach to game day strategy. Both of our children are now members of the youth academy, who houses a coaching staff full of current USL players and experienced coaches, all with the skills and experience to cover any aspect of the game. The coaches are excellent with the children and not only offer a fun and positive environment for players to develop in, but also provide a true love for the game.”

— Michelle Landis, parent of Ethan and Megan

“Having two young players with the DDL, both of which have spent time with other clubs, the most tangible benefit has been the academy’s emphasis of getting the most out of each and every player. This is not the assembly line method of soccer development for young players. The DDL provide a strategic approach to soccer which uses European training methods along with a tailored plan for the individual player which creates an environment where your son or daughter can be successful with the game.”

— Bob Goodman, parent of Brendan and Bobby

  • DDL Soccer Complex

    DDL Soccer Complex

    All practices and games of the Dayton Dutch Lions FC Men’s team (USL PDL) and Women’s team (USL WPSL) will be at the Dayton Dutch Lions FC Soccer Complex in West Carrollton. The stadium seats 3500 people. In 2014 the Dayton Dutch Lions FC and Dayton Outpatient Center (DOC) installed an new artificial turf field in the stadium. DOC Stadium was opened in May 2014 when former 2x “FIFA Best Player in the World” Ruud Gullit kicked off the game against LA Galaxy II in the USL PRO League.


    The address is: 5833 Student St., West Carrollton, Ohio, 45449

  • Tickets

  • Dutch Lions TV

    Dutch Lions TV
  • Oranje Legion

    Oranje Legion