HARRISON, N.J. – David Longwell was named director of Red Bulls Academy Wednesday, the Major League Soccer team announced.
Longwell brings a combination of European development experience and knowledge of the U.S. Development Academy landscape to one of the top academy teams in the United States.
“We are very excited to add David to our staff,” Red Bulls sporting director Denis Hamlett said in a press release. “We are extremely proud of our youth development platform, and consider player development one of the keys to our success both now and for the future. David’s experience in building youth platforms, both with St. Mirren and here in the U.S., makes him an excellent fit to lead our efforts in finding and developing the best talents in our area.”
A native of Renfrew, Scotland, Longwell most recently served as the academy director for MLS team Orlando City SC. He spent 15 years at St. Mirren Football Club in Scotland, where he began as a community coach and worked his way up to head of youth development. Longwell oversaw all aspects of player development and served as manager of the reserve squad.
“I’m absolutely delighted to join the New York Red Bulls as it has such a great reputation in MLS and beyond,” Longwell said in a statement. “It is a fantastic opportunity and I’m looking forward to working hard to support our academy and look to produce players for our MLS team in years to come. I was so impressed with Denis, Jesse, Marc and other staff when I visited the club, I knew it was the right place for me. It’s great to be joining a club with such a good structure and organization.”
Under Longwell’s direction, St. Mirren was regarded as one of the top development academies in Scotland, with several academy products graduating to the senior team that won the Scottish League Cup in 2013.
Longwell will oversee all aspects of coaching and operations for the Red Bulls Academy teams, from Under-12 pre-academy teams through U-18, as well as the U-23 team that competes in the Premier Development League each summer. He will also serve as a bridge between the first team and the academy to ensure that a consistent style of play is taught at all levels.