While I would love to tell you that I have a long, incredibly interesting, eventful journey to falling in love with the beautiful game, that simply is not true. In a family that tended to follow in each other’s footsteps, it became obvious that I was not cut from the same cloth when I entrenched myself in soccer at a young age.
There was no splendid memories of knocking the ball about in the back yard or a story-book moment when I realized soccer was my passion. Destined to be different, I used the pitch as my safe haven, from eight years old until this very day. I could list accomplishment after accomplishment, but luckily for those of you reading, my goal is not to bore you with words that tell you nothing about me as a person. However, what gives me peace of mind about my playing career is that not a single coach of mine will say that I gave less than 100% in any training session or match. I showed up early and stayed late. To this day, I do that at the office, training ground, and family gatherings. That is the one accomplishment that brings me joy.
As my playing career came to an end, I knew that I wanted to stay involved in the game. I knew from a young age that it was where I belonged. The decision that I made immediately after hanging up my boots was to share my knowledge and passion for the game that had taught me so much with others. Luckily for me, playing provided me with the opportunity to meet some incredible people and build long-lasting relationships that I still cherish. People that had shared their knowledge and passion with me were willing to look past my lack of qualifications and experience to allow me to begin my coaching career. My appreciation and love for those people cannot be measured, especially by words.
Six years into my coaching venture, I have met people just as amazing as those that took a chance on me when I was getting started. I have learned more about the game from the touchline than I did when I was still lacing up every week, despite playing for twice as long. Coaching with prestigious organizations such as Coerver Coaching and Rush Soccer has been an incredible journey thus far.
I am a firm believer, not just at youth levels, that there are more ways to measure success in soccer than results. As a film junkie, reciting the principles of play is just as elementary as counting my fingers and toes. The beauty of our game is that there is no black-and-white. There is no wrong or right. Simply put, there is high quality, mediocre, and poor, but realistically, there is so much more. Players, coaches, and fans can express themselves in ways unheard of in other sports.
As the new guy at The Mane Land, I look forward to bringing with me the highest of standards that I have carried from my days on the pitch to my passion of sharing the game with as many people as possible.