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Philadelphia Union releases first episode of ‘Earn Your Place’

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Documentary goes behind the scenes of the Philadelphia Union Academy

Photo Gallery: GA Cup East Regionals
Issa Rayyan
Matt Ralph

The Philadelphia Union released the first of a three-part documentary going behind the scenes of the Philadelphia Union Academy on Wednesday.

The 11-minute first episode opens at 6:30 a.m. at one of the houses where players from outside the area like Michigan native Issa Rayyan and Florida native Frederick Gil (Gil’s mother is house mom) live and catches up with another player, U16 midfielder Marco Bla, at 30th Street Station on his commute to YSC Sports near King of Prussia.

Then it’s off to a morning training session at YSC, where U18 head coach Jeff Cook welcomes the players at 8:15 a.m. and the work begins. Along the way, you get a glimpse of the coaches, like Eric Gorman, explaining the philosophy behind various drills and workouts outside on the turf field (20 percent smaller than the field at Talen Energy Stadium, Cook notes) and inside the gym at YSC.

The episode, which you can watch below, ends with the players finishing their workouts before heading across the street to start the academic part of their day at YSC Academy.