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Meet the New Guy: Michael Niemeier

Introducing another of The Mane Land’s new staff writers.

MLS: New York City FC at Orlando City SC Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Hola to all. I am excited to join The Mane Land community. I am pumped to start writing for such an awesome publication within the soccer world. You know nothing about me as of now, so allow me to fill you in a little bit.

I was born in Florida, native to Jacksonville, and that is where soccer began for me. I grew up in the game thanks to my pops, who was a pretty great soccer player himself, reaching the semi-professional level in the mid ’90s. As a matter of fact, Major League Soccer was not even around yet, which is pretty crazy to imagine nowadays. I am thankful that my dad brought me into the game and I have never left since.

Well, actually there was that moment where I thought I was going to be a professional football player for about two years. Needless to say that dream didn't last very long. Instead, I became less physically fit and less athletic somehow, but luckily soccer was always right around the corner. I got back into the game as my family moved around from Florida to Texas, to Kansas and New Mexico.

Ending up in New Mexico, this is where I would find my greatest connection and love for the sport. I graduated high school in New Mexico after playing all four years of soccer at that level. I also found a great group of friends within the game. This group helped me to grow my knowledge of the sport as we not only loved to play the game, but we also loved to watch it and cheer on our respective clubs.

After graduating college I moved back to my hometown, where I would become a coach at my alma mater. I coached three years for the high school while teaching special education at the ninth-grade academy. From that point forward, I wanted to explore more coaching opportunities and I did just that as I found a job at the collegiate level.

Coaching soccer at the college level was an amazing opportunity for me and I loved every minute of it. I was able to specialize in defense and goalkeeping, which was odd because I don’t play defense and I don’t like goalkeeping on a personal level. In reality though, the experience was worth everything to me and something I will never forget.

I love coaching and will get back into it when the time is right. For now, I want to continue to pursue my knowledge in the sport through writing. The Mane Land should be the perfect place for me to gain the experience I seek. I love soccer and I am passionate about MLS and its continued growth. All that I ask is that all of you help me grow, too.

Thank you.