Courtesy of Geoffrey Lyon Photography

U.S. Soccer Development Academy Finals Week returns to Houston from July 14-20

The 2012-13 U.S. Soccer Development Academy Finals Week will be held from July 14-20 in Houston, returning to the area for a second straight season. The format of the event will differ from last season's Finals Week as both the Under-15/16 and U-17/18 levels will play their group and placement games on the same day.

The tournament is capped off by the U-15/16 and U-17/18 Championships on Saturday, July 20, at BBVA Compass Stadium, the home of Major League Soccer's Houston Dynamo.

Group matches and the other placement games will be played at Houston Amateur Sports Park, located approximately 10 miles south of downtown Houston. The group stage games for all age levels will run on July 14, 16 and 18, and the placement games take place on July 20.

The defending Development Academy champions are FC Dallas, which rallied for a 3-2 victory against the Vancouver Whitecaps for the U-17/18 crown, and the New York Red Bulls, which posted a 1-0 win against St. Louis Scott Gallagher Missouri for the U-15/16 title.

The 2012-13 regular season is wrapping up and teams are preparing for the Academy Playoffs and Showcase from June 24-28 at FC Dallas Park in Frisco, Texas. The U-17/18 age group's games kick off June 24 and the U-15/16 division begins June 25.

The draw for the 2012-13 Development Academy Playoffs is scheduled for Monday, June 17.