Website Manager

VNA Nebraska Sports Center

VNA Nebraska Sports Center




Q.        How do I register for tryouts?

A. We use a registration portal called Sports Connect as our registration portal directly on our website

Follow these steps:

Step 1: Create an account on our website. This can be found in the upper right corner of the web page.  Click the REGISTER button. If you already have an account click the LOGIN button. 
Step 2: Create your account. Enter the parent/guardian as the Account Holder.
Step 3: Add your Participants: your children/your players. Accurately enter their official birth certificate name, gender and birth date.
Step 4: Look at the "Available Programs" for each of your participants and register for the annual membership (otherwise known as Team Formations/Tryouts) or seasonal class offering.
Step 5: Choose the highest level program your family and player wish to commit to for the soccer year. Review the Yellows-TEAM Program U7/8, Groguet-TEAM Program U9/10, Select Program U11/12, Elite Program U13/15, Elite High School Program U15-19, to make sure you are willing to commit.

Note: You can choose your players current soccer age (U7-U19) or one soccer age group higher.  Through the team formation process, DOC Jorge Sambataro and our Staff Coaches will place placers on teams to create mind-like and skill-like teams. Players are evaluated throughout the year as their skills develop and as coaches identify individual player needs. 

Q.        What age range does Villarreal Nebraska Academy serve? How do I know my soccer age?

A.        Villarreal Nebraska Academy provides programs for children from ages 3-19 (U4-U19).  We have a very specific training philosophy and methodology that grows and develops as a player progresses through the system.  For the June 2021-June 2022 Soccer Year, the Birth Year and Age Group Chart is below.

Birth Year:     2018    2017    2016    2015    2014    2013    2012    2011
Age Group:     U4U5U6U7U8U9U10U11


Birth Year:    2010    2009    2008    2007    2006    2005    2004    2003
Age Group:    U12U13U14U15U16U17U18U19

Various programs are designed for specific soccer age. It is invaluable to begin between ages 3-7, when skill development with the ball is at it's peak.
Submarines classes are focused on ages 3-8. Yellows-TEAM is designed for U7-U8, Groguet-TEAM for U9-U10. Select Program U11-U12. Elite Program U13-U19.

Q.        What if I forgot my Login Information to Register for Programs?

A.        Sports Connect has a lookup feature "Forgot your Username or Password" when you select the LOGIN button. 

What if you have an account but you can't locate the original email address used to access your username or password to access the above "Forgot your Username or Password" feature?

A.          Email the Villarreal Nebraska Academy staff to look up your account email or user name. Email Here or Call the Villarreal Office 402-853-7100 during office hours: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday 1:30-4:30, Thursday 10:30-1:30, Friday hours vary. Please leave a message for staff to return your call.


Q.        Why does it mean that Villarreal Nebraska Academy is an Official Partner Academy of Villarreal C.F.?

A.        Villarreal Nebraska Academy was the first Official Partner Academy of Villarreal C.F., the Professional European Academy and LaLiga Club, in the United States. Villarreal C.F. has several Official Partner Academies in the United States and Worldwide.

1.             Villarreal Nebraska players will have direct contact with Villarreal C.F. coaches locally during tryouts each year and at Villarreal C.F. camps in Nebraska.

2.             Each year Villarreal Nebraska Academy will invite 1 boys team and 1 girls team to Villarreal C.F. in Spain over Thanksgiving or in June each year. This is expected to be 7th/8th grade players in the U14 age group or U14 team. We ask that all families expect this and start planning for this. By the year 2021 this will become a common expected opportunity.

3.             1-4 Villarreal Nebraska Academy players will be identified during tryouts, camps or throughout the training year to be invited individually to train at Villarreal C.F. each year over Thanksgiving week.

4.             Our DOC Jorge Sambataro is part of the weekly Villarreal C.F. coaches education class, the weekly directors meeting. DOC Jorge A. Sambataro participates in the class and leads sections of the class for others. This gives our club and its members continuing cutting-edge curriculum and access to professional training techniques and training.

5.             DOC Jorge A. Sambataro and our staff coaches have the opportunity to get intense and specialized training at Villarreal C.F. on a yearly basis. Our coaches have access to coaching curriculum, philosophies and methodologies from Villarreal C.F. and daily support from our own DOC Jorge A. Sambataro though our in-house coaches education at coaches education meetings, co-coaching or club-coaching at training and games. We provide an academy style game environment so teams are coordinated to play league games and tournaments to enhance the academy-style coaching.

Villarreal Nebraska Academy is not just affiliated with the prestigious name of Villarreal C.F. We are a partner academy of Villarreal C.F. A full partner with the same developmental focus, curriculum, philosophy and methodology. We are an Official Partner Academy of Villarreal C.F. - this means there is a direct pathway for our players to an professional European club. 

Q.        What is the difference between the various programs? 

A.  The differences are weekly time commitments and a gradual increase in travel at each level.  

Annual Program Comparison Chart:

which is Subject to Change due to Team Needs

Q.        Do players have opportunities for team or program movement after teams are formed?

A.        For players that view soccer as more than just an opportunity to play with friends, our approach is to treat these players as individuals.  Just like in any other environment, each individual will move through lessons at different paces.  To hold a child back at school because the rest of the class hasn’t learned the lesson will stunt that child’s abilities to grow.  Similarly, if a child hasn’t yet grasped a concept that the rest of the class has, it is unfair to expect that child to keep up with new concepts as they’re introduced.  These rules hold true on the soccer field too, as each child needs to move through lessons at their own pace.  Soccer development involves many different skill sets being challenged at once (e.g. technical, balance, coordination, visual, perceptive, mental), so it is natural that players will progress through lessons at different paces. 

This does not mean players move around on a weekly basis.  Children need some sense of stability to help them experiment and feel comfortable.  Any player movement is weighed before being acted on, and parents and players are often aware that it is potentially in the works. It is generally a process and introduced at a pace that best suits the player and family. It could involve training adjustments, club passing, and secondary playing or any variety of opportunities. DOC Jorge Sambataro has eyes on all the players and all the coaches are trained to watch for players who need varied experiences and different challenges.

Q.        What is the difference between development and winning?

A.        Development and winning can go together. Villarreal Nebraska Academy DOC, staff coaches, players and families love to win and are competitive.  However, our philosophy involves a focus on each player’s development and skills and focus on the process of development and through that process, winning will come. 

If a kindergarten teacher demanded that a child read a book the quickest, everyone would question that teacher’s ability to teach and develop; their focus would be viewed as focusing on the result instead of the process of learning.  This is no different in soccer.  Villarreal Nebraska players are allowed and encouraged to learn and take chances as they learn the basic fundamentals of the sport. 

Our focus is to remove all fear and introduce love and joy of the game. There are still ways to do so correctly; a teacher doesn’t let a child randomly make up letters/sounds, but instead asks them to sound out words.  We ask the same of our players on the field.  With practice, both in training and in games, players learn how to master these tools (skills). The sooner a player adds tools to their toolbelt, the sooner they can progress to the next skills. This is why beginning the process early enhances the continual joy of the game. Players have a no-fear mentality, when developing under the Villarreal Nebraska Academy methodology. 

As the process of development and competition blend there is an expectation to use these technical and tactical tools to win.  At older ages, part of the learning is how to compete and excel on the field, and the lessons will be geared toward players learning how to adapt to opponents and adjust their game in order to win.

Developmental Stages for Age Appropriate Focus:
1. Motor Skill Development, Ages 0-6
2. Fundamental Stage, Ages 6-9
3. Learning to Train, Ages 8-12
4. Training to Train, Ages 11-16
5. Training to Compete, Ages 15-18
6. Training to Win, Ages 17+
7. Retirement

Age when players begin to learn from their mistakes, Ages 9-11


Q.        Where does Villarreal Nebraska train and play?

A.        We will train and/or play our home fields at the following locations

Nebraska Sports Center
Home of Villarreal Nebraska Academy
333 Speedway Circle Suite #4
Lincoln NE 68502

Speedway Village Indoor and Outdoor Fields
345 Speedway Circle
Lincoln NE 68502

Densmore Park
6767 South 14th Street
Lincoln NE 68512

Q.        Will Villarreal Nebraska Academy offer training and games in the Winter?

A.        Yes.  We provide winter training as part of the Yellow-TEAM U7/8, Groguet-TEAM U9/10, Select, Elite and Ultra Programs though out the soccer year. Winter training is part of the yearly programming.

Teams are registered in Great Plains Futsal, which expects to have over 150+ teams participating from U7-U19 these games are in Lincoln and Omaha. For teams that also want to play indoor soccer we offer teams to register for the Speedway Village indoor league. 

Specialized winter programming may be offered if your team is interested in Futsal leagues or tournaments in Kansas City. Those teams and commitments must be communicated before the end of September.

Q.        Why does Villarreal Nebraska Academy wear all Yellow?

A.        Villarreal C.F. is know as the Yellow Submarines and wears all Yellow game kits as often as possible.  The Official Partner Academies will wear approved Villarreal C.F. academy kits as part of the worldwide academy structure. 

Q.        Does Villarreal Nebraska Academy provide scholarships?

A.        Yes.  Villarreal Nebraska Academy is committed to "Access for All." We strive to find ways to make our program accessible to as many players and families as possible.  Through the generosity of donors and sponsors, scholarship opportunities are made available to many players. Through sponsorship opportunities we have programming developed for all need levels of our community. 

Villarreal Nebraska Academy uses enlistment in the Nebraska Department of Education Free and Reduced Lunch Program as a guide to financial need. If your player is part of this program, please submit a copy of the Notice of Approval letter you received from the school district (one photo copy for each player) to  If your child does not attend a public school, please send an email explaining your scholarship needs to [email protected].  There are ways to fund-raise to reduce the costs and there are always needs for referees to work games in the leagues we play in.


Q.         Does Villarreal Nebraska Academy accept players from other clubs and organizations?

A.        Yes.  Villarreal Nebraska Academy wants to provide opportunities to players of all skill levels, from novice to elite.  We are continually seeking to foster our culture with like-minded players who are committed to our club.  We encourage prospective players and parents to visit our website JOIN/TRYOUT for more information and for tryout/team formation dates U11-U13 June 7-11, 2021 and U14-U19 June 28-July 1, 2021. U7-U10 can sign up starting April 1 through July 12th (no tryout needed, clinics will be offered in June).

Q.        How much travel is required with Villarreal Nebraska Academy?

A.        In general, Villarreal Nebraska Academy aims to provide the right level of competition for its players. Yellows and Groguets to not travel, U11-U12 Select should plan to travel approximately 1x per year, U13-U15 Elite should plan to travel approximately 4x per year, U15-U19 High School Elite should plan to travel 4-5x per year.

For younger and less experienced players, the correct competition level can be achieved through local tournaments, festivals and leagues (e.g. Alliance leagues, in-house leagues) in Lincoln and the local area including Omaha/Council Bluffs and Springfield NE.  These leagues typically have very consistent, family friendly schedules.

For more developed players, it is usually necessary to participate in state tournaments and leagues (e.g. NYSL, Regional Alliance League etc.), which typically require travel to locations approximately 1 hour away for some of the league games and a trip to Kansas City, Des Moines.  NYSL has less consistent schedules and locations and playing in Omaha and surrounding area is not considered travel and may be required during weekday evenings and weekends.

For advanced players, greater travel requirements are required to find appropriate competition and experiences.  In these cases, some tournaments and league games will occur in other states.  These leagues have less consistent schedules and travel will be required during weekday evenings in-state and weekends out-of-state which may include a Friday and/or Monday at times.

Q.        Can Villarreal Nebraska Academy players participate in other sports and activities?

A.        Yes.  However, there are different commitment levels depending on your program.

In the Submarines or Yellows-TEAM U7/8 and Groguet-TEAM U9/10 programs, players are encouraged to participate in as many activities as they would like.

In the Select, Elite and Ultra programs, players are encouraged to participate in other athletic, academic, and extracurricular activities with a thoughtful and planned schedule.  To the extent possible, players are expected to coordinate their activities in order to attend all scheduled soccer training, games, and tournaments.  When conflicts are unavoidable, we expect our players to provide us with advanced notice of absences and a comparison of soccer absences versus other absences. Communication is key to a successful player/team/coach relationship and absences should be communicated EARLY at least a week in advance unless emergencies or illness arises. Changing availability less than a week before games could result in loss of playing time or rostering on games. Playing club sports, playing time, and opportunities is a privilege and is earned, it is not a right.

Q.        Should Villarreal Nebraska Academy players participate in high school soccer?

A.        For the vast majority of soccer players in Nebraska, including many of our players, high school soccer is a great avenue to participate in the sport they love and to enjoy a different experience.  We encourage and support our high school athletes as they participate during the high school season.  At many of the local high schools, the majority of the starting varsity players are athletes that have trained with our DOC Jorge Sambataro and our Academy.

For some higher-end players, there are avenues and opportunities, other than playing high school soccer, that provide a better-suited development pathway.  These higher-level leagues around the country have rules that its players are not permitted to participate in high school soccer because for those players, it is not developmentally relevant/appropriate.  As our program continues to grow and develop, it is our intention to produce high-caliber soccer players who can compete in these leagues and need to consider these choices.  Our goal is also to raise the overall level of soccer through our programming so that even if we have players choose to forego a high school season to continue their club development, there will be a higher quantity and quality of player directly behind them to maintain and grow the quality of high school soccer. Until there are teams that want to do this together for the individual that wants something different there are opportunities at Villarreal C.F. and with our sister Partner Academies to give them club training and game experiences instead of playing high school soccer.


VNA - Nebraska Sports Center
345 Speedway Circle, Suite #1
Lincoln, Nebraska 68502

Phone: 402-853-7100
Email: [email protected]

Copyright © 2024 Nebraska Sports Center  |  Privacy Statement |  Terms Of Use |  License Agreement |  Children's Privacy Policy  Log In