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PENNSYLVANIA’S LEADING YOUTH SOCCER PUBLICATION

SPRING 2021

5

UP & COMING

TIPS FOR

SUPERSTARS

TAKING A PK EASTERN PENN ALUMNI

QUALITIES

TONI WASHINGTON

EVERY CAPTAIN

SHOULD HAVE

A LETTER FROM

HEATHER

MITTS

PENNSYLVANIA PROUD ZACK STEFFEN TAKES PRIDE IN HIS ROOTS

2021

NON-PROFIT US POSTAGE PAID PERMIT #15 MONROE, GA

OLYMPIC PREVIEW


CREDITS PUBLISHED BY: Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer 4070 Butler Pike, Suite 100 Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462 Phone: 610-238-9966 Fax: 610-238-9933 E-mail: info@EPYSA.org Website: EPYSA.org EXECUTIVE BOARD President - Jeff Sommer First Vice President Lennie Brown Second Vice President Bill Fuller Treasurer- Jim Brown Secretary Melissa Murphy Weber Registrar - Jim Christian State Youth Referee Administrator - Jeff Tener District 1 Commissioner Becky Barlow District 2 Commissioner Geoff Andrikanich District 3 Commissioner Bill Ross District 4 Commissioner Eric McKitish District 5 Commissioner Scott Merritt District 6 Commissioner Phil Frederick OFFICE STAFF Chief Executive Officer – Chris Branscome Chief Operating Officer – Kelly Connor Technical Director – Mike Barr Director of Soccer Development & Performance – Gary Stephenson Director of Soccer Operations – Brent Jacquette Marketing & Events Manager – Kelsey Russo Director of Membership Services – Marisa J. Pigeon Member Services Manager – Courtney Chinworth Coaching Department Administrator – Gabrielle (Bree) Benedict Operations & Events Assistant – Baley Federico Grassroots Soccer Manager – JT Dorsey TOUCHLINE Editor-in-Chief Chris Branscome Editor - Kelsey Russo Printed and designed by A.E. Engine, Inc.

THE PRIDE OF PA,

ZACK STEFFEN OLYMPIC PREVIEW

6

4

5 UP & COMING SUPERSTARS

TIPS FROM THE EXPERTS 12 Tips From a D1 Soccer Player 15 A Letter From Heather Mitts 19 How to Strike the Ball 22 PK’s From a Keeper’s Perspective

25 Preventing ACL Injuries 26 Qualities Every Captain Should Have

28 Find the Right Soccer Club 30 Do Well in the Classroom 31 Tips for Tryouts

16

DESIGN A SOCCER KIT 39

FUN & GAMES 36 Word Search & Trivia 37 Drawing Contest 38 Pick Your Favorite MLS Jersey EASTERN PENN INITIATIVES 8 Grow the Game 32 National League Playoffs 34 Grassroot Referee Field Sessions 42 Pics From the Pitch 44 Events Calendar Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

1


The Return of Touchline T ouchline is back! Our last publication was in December of 2019. So much has happened since then, but you know that. This issue is about looking ahead and working towards a brighter future. I’m thrilled that we can bring you up close and personal with one of the rising young stars in world soccer, our very own Zack Steffen. Zack has recently captained the United States during international friendlies and just became the fourth American to capture the English Football League Cup while starting in goal for Manchester City. His story, growing up in Downingtown, is similar to many of your stories, and he serves as an excellent role model for all of our young players.

Chris Branscome

Chief Executive Officer, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

I THANK EVERYONE FOR THEIR PATIENCE AS WELL AS THEIR EFFORTS TO KEEP EVERYONE HEALTHY AND SAFE. I’M GLAD THAT SO MANY KIDS HAVE BEEN ABLE TO COME BACK TO SOCCER.

I’d also like to welcome former US Women’s National Team standout Heather Mitts as a contributor to Touchline. Heather will bring her unique perspectives as a world-class athlete, health and wellness advocate and parent. As a three-time gold medalist, we look forward to her thoughts on the Olympics later this summer, as well as her insights on how to train like a champion. We did publish a digital version of Touchline last fall. We hope you liked it, as it was a departure from the printed version. Our goal is to return to the regular schedule of production, but will incorporate technology so you can link from the pages to the screen. Look for information or QR codes that can provide additional resources and information straight from your phone.

Since that last Touchline, we’ve also been hard at work on the Philadelphia World Cup bid. Seventeen American cities are still competing for 10 spots to host the 2026 FIFA World Cup. Things are heating up as FIFA’s timeline includes a site visit later this summer, and final selection is scheduled for the end of this year. Zack Steffen was announced in April as one of our honorary cochairs, joining Julie and Zack Ertz, Carli Lloyd and Union captain Ale Bedoya. Stay tuned for more information this summer and ways you can show your support. Log onto Philadelphia2026.com and follow on Twitter @PHLSoccer2026. I know this spring has been different, but we kept the game moving forward. I thank everyone for their patience as well as their efforts to keep everyone healthy and safe. I’m glad that so many kids have been able to come back to soccer. Please keep doing the things we need to do so that we can get back to full strength and play soccer and all other games the way we used to.

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org


Official Partner of the Philadelphia Union

®

www.bimbobakeriesusa.com


PENNSYLVANIA

Proud

MAN CITY GOALIE ZACK STEFFEN TAKES PRIDE IN HIS ROOTS BY TERRY JACOBY

I

t all started for Zack Steffen right here in Chester County. “We were playing a game when I was about 10 years old and our keeper didn’t show up,” Steffen remembers. “The coach asked if anyone wanted to play goalie and I thought it sounded like fun so I raised my hand. It turned out I was pretty good, so it just stuck.” Steffen, who was born in Coatesville and raised in Downingtown, spent his club soccer days playing for West Chester United, Lower Merion SC and FC Delco while also competing with Philadelphia Union youth teams in high school. Fast forward to 2021 and Steffen is playing for Manchester City, one of the best soccer clubs in the world with a Premier League title a lock. Even though he’s only 26 years old, he’s already made 21 appearances for the U.S. Men’s National Team.

A CLUB SOCCER START

FAMILY FOREVER

Steffen’s first experience with soccer came when he was 6 or 7. He started on defense and eventually made the transition to goalkeeper. He was so good at it that his incredible skills attracted the attention of U.S. scouts. Steffen has been a U.S. National Team member since U-14. He’s a goalkeeper for the U-18 National Team and a regular call-up to the U-20 National Team. Steffen won state titles with West Chester United in 2007 and FC Delco in 2009. He was named Ches-mont League MVP in 2012 before earning U.S. Soccer Development Academy Eastern Conference Player of the Year in 2011-12. “It was a lot of fun,” Steffen said of his club soccer days. “I played on two different teams and they were both a lot of fun and both had great players and great families to be around. We had some good teams and won some prestigious tournaments and a couple of State Cups.”

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

Family has always been important to Steffen. The son of Derek and Stefanie Steffen, Zack has four siblings (Kaitlyn, Alexis, Ben and Cole). Steffen says his parents nurtured his love of the game from a very early age and have been ready to guide him and offer support through every phase of his career. “My mom has always been a big role model to me,” he says. “She has given me leadership skills, a great work ethic and has shown me the essential values a person needs in sports and in life.” Steffen even works closely with a non-profit foundation (Voycenow) that helps families in need. After playing 48 games for the University of Maryland, Steffen turned professional and headed overseas to play for German club SC Freiburg. He returned home in 2016 and played three seasons in the MLS with Columbus Crew SC. In 2019, he signed a three-year contract with Manchester City. What’s it like to be playing on perhaps the greatest club in the world? “It’s been amazing and interesting and challenging,” he says. “It’s also been a little strange with COVID and all the rules that go with that. It’s been hard because I haven’t seen my family since last summer and we didn’t have a preseason so it took some time for me to get to know my new teammates. “But what a great learning experience. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot better. It’s been hard not playing on a regular basis (Ederson is the established starter) because everyone wants to play. I use it as motivation.”


Zach Steffen won Eastern Pennsylvania State Cup championships with West Chester United in 2007 and FC Delco in 2009.

THE FIGHT FOR EQUALITY To learn more about Zack Steffen’s foundation fighting for social justice and equality, visit www.voycenowfoundation.org/

THE WORLD STAGE Right now, Steffen is doing what he always does – working hard and getting better. “Just to be in training with those guys every day is making me better,” he says. “It’s pushing me in ways that I definitely wasn’t pushed in the past. Just in every aspect, it’s quicker, faster, more intense and it’s sharper. You really have to be focused and dialed in. These are some of the best players in the world.” Steffen recently completed a series of Friendly’s with the U.S. Men’s National Team in late March that included wins over Trinidad and Tobago (7-0) and a very good Northern Ireland team (2-1). He realizes expectations are high for the United States heading into the World Cup in 2022 (in Qatar) and then when the United States hosts the event in 2026. And he’s got no problem with high expectations. “It’s a very exciting time,” Steffen said when asked about the U.S. Men’s National Team. “The camps we have had the last six months and the recent games have been amazing.

Zach Steffen started the VOYCENOW platform in the fight for equality after George Floyd’s death.

I’ve seen a lot of growth and a lot of new faces, new talent and a new system. There is a lot of great energy with a great mindset. There is so much great potential. These guys are my brothers and I look forward to being with my brothers.” Steffen also has been a captain on the pitch for the United States side. “Just being a goalkeeper, my role is being a leader, being that voice on the field,” he says. “I’m trying to get to know these guys as much as possible. Just letting them know that there’s a certain standard that comes along with being a part of this team. We have a really good group of young guys. They’re willing to work, learn and push themselves to get better.” Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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TAKING ON TOKYO

Can the USWNT Earn Olympic Gold Again? By Dan Guttenplan

I

t’s not often the United States Women’s National Team is motivated by a previous defeat, but the Americans will be seeking a measure of redemption at the 2020 Summer Olympics after falling in the quarterfinal round of the last Olympic Games in 2016. The 2020 Summer Olympics will be played a year later than originally scheduled due to the pandemic,, with the men’s and women’s tournaments beginning on July 21 and running through August 7. The draws for the groups in Tokyo took place in April, with the United States women’s

national team getting a familiar foe in Sweden, while also having to face Australia, ranked ninth in FIFA’s world rankings and New Zealand coached by former USWNT coach Tom Sermanni in an exceedingly difficult group. The meeting between the U.S. and Sweden in the group stage will be the 42nd between the two and fourth in the last three years. The U.S. also faced Sweden in the 2019 World Cup, which saw them play for the fifth consecutive World Cup. Sweden also knocked the U.S. out of the 2016 Summer Olympics on penalty kicks in the quarterfinals.

Tokyo Olympics Schedule U.S. WOMEN’S NATIONAL TEAM DATE OPPONENT VENUE

KICKOFF

July 21 July 24 July 27

5:30 p.m. local / 4:30 a.m. ET 8:30 p.m. local / 7:30 a.m. ET 5 p.m. local / 4 a.m. ET

Sweden New Zealand Australia

Tokyo, Japan (Tokyo Stadium) Saitama, Japan (Saitama Stadium) Kashima, Japan (Ibaraki Kashima Stadium)

U.S. ALL-TIME RECORD VS. GROUP G OLYMPIC OPPONENTS TEAM

GP

W

L

D

GF

GA

Sweden

41

23

6

12

72

36

New Zealand

17

15

1

1

62

6

Australia

30

26

1

3

101

27

Total

88

64

8

16

235

68

GROUP E

GROUP F

GROUP G

Japan

China

Sweden

Canada

Brazil

USWNT

Great Britain

Zambia

Australia

Chile

Netherlands

New Zealand

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

Tobin Heath

FORWARD | NO. 17 Coach Vlatko Andonovski was quick to name Tobin Heath as someone critical to the team’s plans in the year ahead. Certainly, the singularity of Heath makes her an easy player to plan for — if she’s healthy, you pencil her in for the gasp-inducing improvisation and joyful expression that defines her game. Heath will be 33 at the time of this year’s Olympic Games, and she appears to have learned to harness the magic to maximum effect – her dribblingsprees ending in goals more than ever before.

Carli Lloyd

FORWARD | NO. 10 Lloyd will look to solidify her role as designated goalscorer in the manner of late-career Abby Wambach. Historically, she shines on the biggest stages, with gamewinning goals netted in in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics gold medal games, and most spectacularly, in the 2015 World Cup final. With 26.7 million watching, she scored three goals in the course of fifteen minutes, including a 50-yard wonder strike from half field.

Crystal Dunn

DEFENDER | NO. 19 Crystal Dunn, listed as a defender, can play any position on the field. it will be interesting to see how and where Andonovski deploys the multifaceted star. A similar question exists for Midge Purce, on the team, and expected to play further up the field this season for her club team, Sky Blue FC.

Sophia Smith

WOMEN’S OLYMPIC DRAW

6

4

USWNT PLAYERS TO WATCH

FORWARD | NO. 11 And then there’s Sophia Smith, already thrice-capped, who Andonovski singled out for praise. Amid a crowded veteran group up top, it is interesting to see Smith remain in the mix, a nod to both her development and the consistent need to balance the current interests


C I P M Y L O T N W US A TRIVI

d history as a prou ch you h m a e T l u Nationa t how m . Find ou ing quiz. Women’s s e s te m a ta G S ed pic e follow The Unit ting in the Olym taking th y a b ip y r ic t to r his of pa out that know ab

6. In what year did the USWNT not win Olympic gold? A. 2004 B. 2008 C. 2012 D. 2000

7. In what round did the USWNT lose to Sweden in the 2016 Olympic Games? A. Group play B. Quarterfinal C. Semifinal D. Final

8. Which two-time USWNT Olympic gold medal-winning coach will coach Brazil in this year’s Olympics? A. Pia Sundhage B. April Heinrichs C. Tony DiCicco D. Jill Ellis

9. Which nation is the defending champion from the 2016 Olympic Games? A. Brazil B. Germany C. Sweden D. Netherlands

1. In what year did the United States Women’s National Team win the inaugural Olympic women’s soccer tournament? A. 1988

B. 1992

C. 1996

D. 2000

2. Which Pennsylvania native is one of only four women to win three Olympic gold medals? A. Heather Mitts

B. Ali Krieger

C. Christie Welsh

D.Meghan Klingenberg

10. Which of the following nations has been seeded in the same group as the United States in Tokyo? A.Germany B. Sweden C. Norway D. Japan

3. Which American player surpassed the record for most international goals before retiring in 2015? A. Mia Hamm

B. Christen Press

C. Lauren Holiday

D. Abby Wambach

4. Who scored twice in the United States’ victory over Japan in the 2012 Olympic gold-medal game? A. Sydney Leroux

B. Carli Lloyd

C. Megan Rapinoe

D. Tobin Heath

5. Who has the most caps (national team appearances) in USWNT history? A. Abby Wambach

B. Mia Hamm

C. Kristine Lilly

D. Hope Solo

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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Answers: 1. B; 2. A, 3. D; 4. B; 5. A; 6. D; 7. B; 8. A; 9. B; 10. D


EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA YOUTH SOCCER

WORKING TO GROW THE GAME Through the Grow the Game initiative, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer is working to increase participation and experiences in soccer by bringing resources directly to underserved communities throughout its state association. That includes coach education, workshops, and clinics hosted by qualified trainers. Members can also receive new equipment and other resources to help grow the game. Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Grassroots Soccer Manager JT Dorsey recently joined Touchline to share more information about the Grow the Game initiatives. By Dan Guttenplan

WHAT INSPIRED THE GROW THE GAME INITIATIVE? “THE STATE ASSOCIATION has always looked to help its members, but ultimately it stemmed from the decrease in participation numbers across the state of Pennsylvania. Going back to 2003, participation in the city of Philadelphia is down 70%. We did some research to determine what happened. We found that a lot of local clubs and coaches didn’t receive enough help and support. We’re trying to create a place of learning and equity for people and organizations. The gap seems to be widening between programs that have resources and programs that don’t ultimately leave kids out of the game. Some of the smaller clubs are volunteer-based, and we want to help educate and present opportunities so that everybody can learn if they want. We want to help our members create safe and inclusive environments for all kids.”

HOW HAS THE PROGRESS BEEN SO FAR? “WE WERE GETTING A LOT OF TRACTION AND then Covid hit. We restarted with learning opportunities through Zoom. Now we’re going to open our grants program in May. The mission of that is to help our members grow and rebuild the game in their communities. Across our state association soccer is down 30% because of the pandemic, so we’ve made it important to help our members support the children in their communities.

GROW THE GAME FUNDING TO REBUILD AND GROW THE GAME, WE MUST create safe space and peak interest of the kids in our communities. We can’t do what we’ve always done. We need to sustain and develop. Through the Grow the Game Fund and the Innovate to Grow Grant, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer will be

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

Eastern Penn Technical Director Mike Barr instructs at a 7v7 Grassroots coaching course in Reading in April.

awarding a total of $50,000 to its members in an effort to increase participation where soccer has been depleted. We will use these funds to help members kick start their creative ideas to rebuild and expand their current programs. The (4) areas of interest will be: 1. Coach Education 2. Referee Education 3. Increasing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion 4. Program Development.

DIVERSITY, EQUITY, INCLUSION WORKSHOPS

AS PART OF EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA YOUTH Soccer’s Grow the Game campaign, the association is offering workshops to assist coaches in understanding different cultural backgrounds with a goal of making all leagues inclusive to people of all backgrounds and beliefs. “We’re helping organizations have a better understanding of how to be inclusive to all participants,” Dorsey said. “By having these educational seminars and workshops, we’ll be able to teach people to create inclusive environments making soccer the game for all kids. We believe it is not only important to create a physically safe space but also an emotionally safe space and we will invest to make this happen.” Examples of seminars include “Conceptualizations of Power & Privilege” and “A Strength-Based Approach to LGBTQ+ Youth.”


Meet US Soccer CEO

W

Will Wilson

ill Wilson was named CEO / Secretary General of the U.S. Soccer Federation on March 23, 2020. The London, England, native came to U.S. Soccer with 29 years of vast and diverse experience in the international and domestic sports industry. At the age of 52, he joined U.S. Soccer from global sports agency Wasserman, where he served as Executive Vice President and Co-Head of Football for the previous eight years. Wilson also held executive positions with Soccer United Marketing, the National Football League, Champ Car World Series and the Arena Football League. Wilson joined Touchline for a Q&A.

What is your background in the sport of soccer?

“I’ve spent a large portion of my life living and working outside the United States, and as a result have been around the game and around folks who have worked in the game and those experiences and friendships have been influential in my growing love of the game. I had a fantastic opportunity to learn the business side of soccer when I was in charge of the international business for Major League Soccer and SUM.”

What have you learned from your year as US Soccer CEO?

“Learning how to manage an organization during a global pandemic with little or no in-person contact with anyone at the Federation – few of whom I have met in person - over a long period of months has been a new challenge for sure. I think we’ve all learned a lot about ourselves, our co-workers and our abilities to adapt and even thrive in difficult situations. We also had a chance to take a step back and evaluate our organization internally and have been able to implement goal setting, performance management, as well as developing and articulating our Principles and Values - all important steps in developing a positive working culture. We have also gone through a robust DEI Assessment in response to the killing of George Floyd, which has forced us to take a hard look at ourselves in this area and start to chart a positive way forward – including establishing an internal DEI Council and adding a diversity expert in our HR department, and inviting open dialogue from our staff.”

What do you see as the biggest challenges?

“Clearly, right now it’s the pandemic and the financial impact it has had on our Federation. I came on right at the beginning of the pandemic and honestly, it’s been difficult as we had to to make some tough decisions. Things seem to be trending more positively now, and we are hopeful the sports world gets back to normal by 2022 and that the events we have this year go off without a hitch.”

What about the greatest strength?

“Our greatest strength is our employees. These are smart, highly motivated people who are not only working for U.S. Soccer as a great job, but also because they have a passion for the sport and a desire to see it succeed and grow.”

What made you want to take on this challenge?

“I view the opportunity as an honor and a privilege. For me, U.S. Soccer has been one of those brands, one of those institutions, that’s been very admired from my perspective. I go through a process every few years of writing down things I’d like to do or places I’d like to work, and U.S. Soccer honestly has been on my list for over 10 years.”

How can US Soccer support the growth of the game?

“We want to make sure we are communicating with our members to make sure they are doing the things that contribute to positive growth by putting the focus on what benefits the player, the coach and the referees. The grassroots is where the real work is done and we need to continue to understand that. Of course, it’s vitally important that we do our part in continuing to support our current 23 National Teams -- Women’s, Men’s, Boys’ and Girls’ and Extended – as much as we can. It’s a significant, but important investment that creates role models for young players while giving the fans players and teams to cheer.”

What’s your outlook on 2026 and hosting the World Cup?

“The World Cup is the biggest sporting event in the world, and the 2026 World Cup will be incredibly significant and important even for soccer in our geography. We know it will have a profound impact on the future of the game in the USA, Mexico and Canada, and we can’t wait. It will be a real catalyst for a lot of positive things in our sport. The stadiums are world class, the stands will be full, the TV audience across the world will be massive and the fan interest will be record-breaking. Of course, we’re hoping our U.S. Men’s National Team puts in an historic performance as well. FIFA is getting closer to choosing the venues, and once that happens, preparations will pick up steam.”

What do you know of Eastern Pennsylvania’s history and tradition?

“I know that Eastern PA has a long, long history of soccer and that those in the area have played an important part in the establishment of the U.S. Soccer Federation. Also, there’s no doubt that players from the area formed an important part of our first National Teams in the early 1900s, and we’ve seen some great players come through the ranks in the years since. The history and tradition of soccer in Eastern PA is something to be cherished and appreciated.” Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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2021 Union League

Good Citizenship Award Winners Penn Fusion Soccer Academy

Andrew Carlson

Skyler Jordan

Oludemilade (Demi) Olatilo

FC Steel United/Former ODP

FC Delco/ODP

Spencer Carmichael

Laurel Latt

Maura Ott

Marple Newtown Soccer Association

Michael Li

Lou Daniele

Ukrainian Nationals/Former ODP

Lily Ferguson

Lehigh Valley United

Noa Livingstone

Amity AC

Strath Haven Soccer/Former 1776 United

Erin Griffin

Will McCambridge

Amity AC

Swarthmore Soccer Club

Lauren Gross

Olivia McGuriman Montgomery United Soccer Club

North Union United Soccer Club

10

Towamencin Soccer Club

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

Patriot FC

Olivia Pasko Pennsylvania Soccer Academy/ODP

Spencer Rosenbaum FC Europa/Former ODP

Jacob Seed Lehigh Valley United

Ian Wong Lionville Soccer Club


EASTERN PENN SOCCER ALUMNA SHARES HER

TRAINING SECRETS By Terry Jacoby

T

oni Washington turned a successful club career into a successful college career. While her career at Delaware State University is over, she isn’t quite done with the game of soccer. She’s currently playing with Huntingdon Valley’s U23 women’s team under Brad Sorkin. She also has plans to coach at her alma mater, Abington High, under Rick Tompkins. Washington, 23, has been playing with HVAA since she was 10 for Brad Sorkin, the 2015 Eastern Penn Travel Coach of the Year. In 2015, HV Pride won the Presidents Cup Championship. She credits her club experience with HVAA for helping her succeed at the college level. “I played with some of the best players on each level,” she says. “There also were the tournaments and the bonding that comes from traveling with your team. The bonds and friendships that I made and still have. The platform that Eastern Penn provided for college coaches to see me play against top-flight teams and the coaching.” Washington says she picked Eastern Penn because of the high level of competition on every level. “I hate to lose more than I like to win, and I know that the girls on the team shared a similar passion and desire to be better and work hard,” she says. “I also had the ability to face some of the best talent in my age group from all over not just in Montgomery County. Some of those players I have had the pleasure of playing on the collegiate level. “EPYSA offers the ability to receive top-rate coaching along with playing with and against some of the best players in your age group that you are able to connect with and sometimes even form lifelong bonds with.” Washington also had a chance to play with the Olympic Development Program (ODP). “My ODP experience was so much fun,” she says. “Rick Tompkins (ODP Boys U16 Coach) was my high school soccer coach and suggested that I try out and it was a great experience. Being a part of that team I had the opportunity to train with Hannah Alexander and Emily Keitel (Temple), Krista Kissell (Lafayette) and Shea Tomlinson (Drexel), who I ended up playing against in college, along with Shea Moyer (Penn State). When you are training with players who are that skilled and that talented you get better each practice.”

TONI’S TIPS FOR PLAYING CLUB SOCCER 1 BE COACHABLE 5 HYDRATE 2

PRACTICE AT GAME SPEED EVERY PRACTICE

6

STAY AWAY FROM JUNK FOOD & SUGAR

3

EARN SOMETHING NEW EVERY YEAR

7

4

CHALLENGE YOURSELF TO BE BETTER

ENJOY EVERY MOMENT OF PRACTICE, GAMES & ROAD TRIPS

12

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org


SCORE EXTRA SAVINGS EASTERN PENNSYLVANIA YOUTH SOCCER

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AN ATHLETIC OR OUTDOOR APPAREL ITEM

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Limit one item per coupon, per customer. Must be used in one transaction. Valid on in-store purchases only. Cannot be combined with any other offers, team discounts, or used for gift cards, licenses or previously purchased merchandise. Not redeemable for cash, gift cards or store credit. No reproductions or rain checks accepted. Returns or exchanges where a ScoreCard Reward or other discount was applied may result in an adjusted refund amount. Excludes clearance items. Clearance items have .X3 or .X7 endings. Some exclusions apply. See store and DICKS.com/exclusions for details.

Limit one item per coupon, per customer. Must be used in one transaction. Valid on in-store purchases only. Cannot be combined with any other offers, team discounts, or used for gift cards, licenses or previously purchased merchandise. Not redeemable for cash, gift cards or store credit. No reproductions or rain checks accepted. Returns or exchanges where a ScoreCard Reward or other discount was applied may result in an adjusted refund amount. Excludes clearance items. Clearance items have .X3 or .X7 endings. Some exclusions apply. See store and DICKS.com/exclusions for details.


GIVING BACK TO THE GAME

HEATHER MITTS HELPS YOUNG PLAYERS DEVELOP SKILLS By Terry Jacoby

H

eather is a three-time Olympic gold medalist with the U.S. Women’s National Team and played for the USA in the 2011 FIFA World Cup. Well known for her hard work and leadership on the pitch, Mills has taken those qualities into the business world, where she has been a winner as a soccer analyst/reporter. Her latest venture, Train Like Legends, is a new online training platform. Mitts, who announced her retirement from soccer in March of 2013, created Train Like Legends as a way to help athletes take their game and performance to the next level. “I feel like strength and conditioning allowed me to have longevity both in college and with the U.S. National Team,” she says. “I never lifted a single weight until I got to college. I feel like if I had spent more time practicing and becoming more familiar with that aspect of my game, it would have helped me even more. “When I retired, I saw that nothing existed for the female athlete to reach their full potential, both on and off the field. So, we created Train Like Legends to help educate, guide and inspire young athletes.” The digital platform of Train Like Legends allows athletes to train like professional athletes – just like Mitts did – without having schedules or locations interfering with the workouts. Available to coaches and players at the high school, club, ODP or academy levels, Train Like Legends is designed to help players and their teammates improve. It combines world-class instructional videos with a digital platform that allows coaches to assign workouts and track individual development to help ensure consistent, tangible results.

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Mitts, now 42, played for several teams in the Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league, including the Philadelphia Charge and the Philadelphia Independence. Her kids are even giving soccer a kick with the Rose Tree Soccer Club (EPYS) out of Media. Mitts, who is even volunteering her time as a coach, says her Train Like a Legend program is ideal for club soccer players – and the program is done on an app on your phone so it’s very convenient. “I love the fact that the program holds you accountable,” she says. “We send a workout to them every single day. They don’t have to do it every day but we at least offer it for those who want it. It will help you build your stamina and make you stronger and reduce injuries.” Mitts said club soccer not only helped her achieve her goals on the soccer field but also in the business world and in life. “It’s about competing, and not only against others but also against yourself, and trying to become the best version of yourself,” she says. “It’s about teamwork. Some of my best friends to this day were my teammates and I know I wouldn’t have been as successful without the help of others. “It’s also about overcoming adversity. You have to learn how to overcome an obstacle whether it’s an injury or beating a really good team. Same with life. There are always obstacles. Sports helps set you up for life and the lessons you learn you take with you for the rest of your life.” TO LEARN HOW TO TRAIN LIKE A PRO LIKE HEATHER MITTS, VISIT HER WEBSITE AT TRAINLIKELEGENDS.COM


A LETTER FROM

HEATHER MITTS Hello parents and players. I had the privilege and honor of playing soccer for the red, white and blue for 13 years of my life. My love for the game started in my backyard. My younger brother became very technically sound, even flying overseas to shoot Coerver videos. Needless to say he was pretty good with the ball at his feet. I spent the majority of those 1v1 backyard battles trying to regain possession. No wonder I would later become a defender. Not to mention our battles always ended in a fight. So, I also have my brother to thank for my toughness. At 5-foot-4, I relied a lot on my speed, athleticism, work rate and feisty spirit. I played numerous sports but was asked to focus on my favorite after my freshman year. When I said soccer, my mom was disappointed. She said you can’t play that when you are older. I said that’s okay, I love it. One of the things I’m most proud of is always following my heart and passion. Soccer helped me receive a partial scholarship at the University of Florida. I fell in love with the entire package and could see myself thriving as a regular student. I never would have expected to win the National Championship my junior year, and my doors opened to the youth national team level. I admit when I played my last college soccer game, I thought my playing days were over. There was no league at the time. Then 1999 happened. I was in the stands, planting a seed to one day play on the U.S. National Team. One year later I would be playing alongside or against all of those women in the first ever women’s pro league. At times I had to pinch myself to be prolonging my career and call myself

a professional athlete. Philadelphia embraced its first ever women’s pro team. We led the league in attendance behind Mia Hamm’s Washington Spirit. Despite being the only team without a National Team headliner and picked to place last with the youngest roster, we rose to the occasion. I landed on a team with first class coaches that would enable me to reach the pinnacle. Mark Krikorian knew in order for me to break into the U.S. team I needed to become more versatile. He moved me from right back to center back in my 3rd WUSA season. I went from playing in one national team game per year over three years to starting and playing at center back. That move helped me earn my first Olympic nod in Athens, Greece. As a result, I stood up on the podium winning my first Olympic Gold Medal alongside the women who paved the way. The rest of my career was filled with so many amazing ups, downs and experiences. I am grateful for amazing coaches, trainers, teammates and fans. I can now put my fingers on a few things that allowed me to play at the highest level. When I retired in 2013, I had played in 136 games, winning a silver in the World Cup and three Olympic gold medals. The lessons learned by playing sports are invaluable. I apply them to how I parent, to my business and everyday life. All things I hope to share with you. My husband AJ Feeley and I live in Upper Providence raising our three children, ages 7, 5 and 2.5. No greater job in the world raising my crazies. Coaching my two oldest kids has opened my eyes even more to the challenges and ways we can make this sport better. I look forward to connecting and thanks for having me.

When I retired, I saw that nothing existed for the female athlete to reach their full potential, both on and off the field. HEATHER MITTS

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5

UP-AND-COMING

SUPERSTARS

AROUND THE WORLD By Terry Jacoby

Do you want to sound like you know what you’re talking about when it comes to international soccer? Get to know these five up-and-comers, and you’ll be the one leading the discussion.

ANSSUMANE “ANSU” FATI VIEIRA BARCELONA / SPAIN Only 18, Fati is already considered one of Spain’s most exciting football talents, and one of the best young players in the world. A forward with great knowledge of the game, he is known for an incredible work ethic and technical virtues which helps make him stand out even at such a young age playing against much more experienced players. .

ALPHONSO BOYLE DAVIES BAYERN MUNICH / CANADA Alphonso Boyle Davies is a 20-year-old Canadian who currently plays for Bundesliga club Bayern Munich and the Canadian National Team. An extremely talented player featuring explosive pace, incredible dribbling skills along with creativity with the ball, Davies is a Champions League winner and is already considered one of the best defenders in the world.

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PHIL FODEN MANCHESTER CITY / ENGLAND A few years ago, Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola made a somewhat controversial decision by keeping prodigy Phil Foden at home instead of loaning him out to earn playing time. It was 2016 and Foden was 17 years old at the time. Guardiola said he saw something “special” and “unique” in the young man and decided to keep the young man at City – unlike players such as Jadon Sancho and Brahim Diaz who left to play elsewhere. The City manager was happy to bide his time with Foden, playing him just 10 times in all competitions in the 2017-18 season, 26 in 2018-19, and 38 last season. In February of this year, Foden dominated Liverpool with his pace, youth and movement to help lead City to a 4-1 win over the champions in the Premier League. Look for Foden, who joined City’s academy at the age of 9, to be a starter for England in this summer’s European Championship.

YUNUS MUSAH VALENCIA / USA Yunus Musah, an 18-year-old multinational with eligibility for England, Ghana, Italy and the United States, chose to represent the USA in international competition. Born in New York City, the dynamic and promising midfielder plays at Valencia in Spain’s top division, one of the best leagues in the world that features storied teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid. Playing against such elite competition will only speed up his level of play and prepare him for the world stage.

CATARINA MACARIO LYON (FRENCH DIVISION) / USA The two-time winner of the MAC Hermann Trophy as the nation’s best college player, Macario had a Stanford single-season record of 32 goals and 23 assists last season. Born in Brazil, she was called up to her first national team camp the same day she became a US citizen. She currently plays as a midfielder for Lyon of the French Division 1 Féminine. “Everyone gets better when you play with Catarina, and that’s probably the greatest compliment you can have as a player, that you make everyone around you better. It’s very rare that you get the complete player, and she is the complete player,” said Stanford’s Knowles Family Director of Women’s Soccer Paul Ratcliffe. Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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NIKE MERCURIAL VAPOR/SUPERFLY DRAGONFLY Led by athlete insight, the boot takes on four areas of focus: FIT: an upper that feels like a natural extension of the foot TOUCH: natural touch, helping athletes to maintain control at high speeds TRACTION: quick acceleration and breaking in all directions STYLE: brighter, lighter and faster With these in mind, the design of the new Mercurial draws on the natural geometry of a Dragonfly’s wing as a guide to driving maximum efficiency with minimal weight. This results in a lightweight, efficient boot stripped to 7 key components, each made visible for an arresting aesthetic that relays the pure essentials of speed.

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NIKE PHANTOM GT SCORPION

NIKE MERCURIAL DREAM SPEED 3 RELAYS The sleek, fluid aesthetic is matched with designs of wave patterns characterizing quickness. Additional graphic elements connect to football. The dotted patterns denote formations used by winning teams across the years. A gridded, waved pattern represents the rippling effect made by a goal when scored. The boot is accentuated with a translucent plate and fluorescent coloring on the Swoosh that features a black and white color shift — this symbolizes the conceptual idea of past and present as a means to get wearers to their goals.

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With the Phantom GT Scorpion, the generational link between “Secret Tournament” and boot materializes through a chrome upper and plate referencing the tournament’s ball, painted brush strokes mimicking the onship location and the yellow/black hazard stripes framing the goals. Additionally, a lateral scorpion graphic, featuring the phrases “Secret Tournament” and “Engineered For Skills,” updates the original scorpion logo.

NIKE MERCURIAL SUPERFLY MBAPPÉ ROSA With its speedy aesthetic and unmissable pop of pink on the pitch, the Nike Mercurial Superfly Mbappé Rosa rebirths the 2008 Nike Mercurial Vapor Rosa. The boot reminds Mbappé of life lessons he learned from his mother about the importance of hard work and determination.


L L A B E H T E IK

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SCAN THE QR CODE TO WATCH AND LEARN

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DEALING WITH PK’S a Keeper’s Perspective by Simon Robinson, ODP Goalkeeper Director

W

hen discussing penalty kicks with keepers, I find it very interesting to hear how everyone has a different way to try to deal with them. Some say, “watch the kickers hips”, others say “watch which way their plant foot is facing”, then there are those who say, “Watch their eyes just before they kick it.” Personally, when I talk penalty kicks with keepers and try to offer my opinion on how best to deal with them, I discuss the technique I used when I played and had a lot of success with.I tried to keep it simple when facing PK’s, and just reacted to the ball once it was kicked, just like any other shot. When I explain to keepers my technique, I ask them, “Would you just guess to try and save with any other shot?”. Guessing which way to dive before the kick is taken, in my opinion, gives you a very slim chance of making the save. Reacting to the shot and moving/diving to save the ball gives you a better chance of making the save. As a keeper, I would save approximately 3 out of every 4 PK’s I faced using this method.

Keepers tell me that they feel lots of pressure when facing PK’s. I try to remind them that the pressure is more on the striker, as they are really expected to score. A full-size goal is 192 Sq/Ft and the striker is 12 yards out, so they ‘should’ score. I tell keepers to relax, react to the shot, and commit to the save in the direction the ball is going. Well taken PK’s stand more of a chance of being scored. However, if a kick is not hit with precision and accuracy and you have reacted to the shot, you will more than likely make the save. Have you ever seen a PK where the ball is not struck well, and the keeper has already guessed and dove the other way? Imagine if that keeper had waited and reacted to the actual shot, it would have been saved. I ask you as keepers to experiment and practice your own techniques, but I do also ask that you try the technique I have just explained. I feel you will benefit from it!

REMEMBER... • Relax (the pressure is not on you) • React (a PK is just a shot after all) • Step in the Save (just like every other save)

• Catch or Parry the Ball • Enjoy the PK Save!! 22

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ACL Injury Prevention By Kevin B. Freedman, M.D., Rothman Institute of Sports Medicine Chair, Medical Advisory Committee

U

nfortunately, anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries are common in soccer and they continue to be seen in greater frequency and younger age groups. The ACL is one of the major stabilizing ligaments in the center of the knee and helps prevent the thigh bone (femur) from shifting forward on the shin bone (tibia). It also helps control rotation of the knee. About 70% or more of ACL injuries are non-contact and occur from landing awkwardly or inability to control the position of the knee. Additionally, ACL injuries are more common in females and some of this is due to differences in the way females run, cut, jump, and decelerate. An injury to the ACL has devastating effects on our athletes including lost seasons, the need for surgery, and the potential for further knee problems in the future. The good news is that these injuries CAN BE PREVENTED! There has been extensive research performed to show that programs designed to improve athletes ability to control the way they jump and land can reduce their risk of injury. These programs can reduce the risk of injury by over 80%, are effective for both girls and boys,

and can also reduce the risk of other injuries as well. There are several programs available but all have similar elements. Most are about 12 weeks in length and begin in the preseason and continue throughout the year. They take about 10-15 minutes to preform and should be done three times per week. Typically, this replaces the traditional soccer warm-up at the beginning of practice. Performing these exercises with proper form is crucial to help avoid the trunk and knee positions that make the knee susceptible to injury. Goals of the program are to avoid vulnerable positions, increase flexibility, increase strength, and increase proprioception (your body’s ability to know where it is in space). ADDITIONAL INFORMATION CAN ALSO BE FOUND AT

ROTHMANORTHO.COM/ACL Not all ACL injuries can be prevented, but some can. Talk to your coach. Dedicate time for you and your team to avoid these injuries and help have a successful season!

The Specific elements of each program include...

1

Warm up (Jog line to line, shuttle run, backward running)

2

Strengthening (Walking lunges, Nordic hamstring, single toe raises)

3

Plyometrics (Lateral hops over cones, forward/backward hops, single leg hops)

4

Sports-Specific Agility (Forward/ backward running/ diagonal runs/ bounding run)

5

Stretching (Calf stretch/quadriceps stretch/hamstring stretch)

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EAT IT

OR

DON’T EAT IT

WHAT TO PUT IN YOUR BODY -- AND WHAT NOT TO PUT IN YOUR BODY

The foods and fluids you consume before and during training should be the ones you’ll use for the event. Part of maximizing your performance on the field is preparing your body through proper nutrition. Here are some tips to fueling. By Nancy Clark, Sports Nutritionist

CARBOHYDRATES

EAT: Apple, orange, banana, applesauce, boiled potato, roasted carrots, sticky rice balls, pretzels, pita, sports drinks, gels, chomps DON’T EAT: Frosted Flakes, PopTarts, ramen, white bread, desserts

FRUIT

SUGARY SNACKS

Clark says: “Some popular carb-based pre-and during-exercise snacks include fruits, vegetables and grains. While you want to limit nutrient-poor carbs, wholesome carbs should be the foundation of every meal to fully fuel muscles.

FATTY FOODS

EAT: Nut butter, peanut butter, nuts DON’T EAT: Butter, cheese, ice cream

ICE CREAM

PEANUT BUTTER

Clark says: Fatty foods tend to slowly leave the stomach and are metabolized slower than carb-rich foods. If you will be exercising for only one to two hours, think twice before reaching for a handful of nuts or a chunk of cheese for a quick fix before you exercise. A banana or slice of toast will digest quicker and be more available for fuel.

DRINKS

DRINK: Water, sports drinks, chocolate milk DON’T DRINK: Soda, sugary juices

CHOCOLATE MILK

SODA

Clark says: “Chocolate milk is preferable to sports drink to enhance rehydration. It offers more sodium — as well as more carbohydrate and protein. Drink wisely! Do not over-consume plain water and/or sports drink during extended exercise unless you are taking in other sources of sodium.” Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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8 Qualities

EVERY CAPTAIN SHOULD HAVE Having a strong captain is an asset to a soccer team. I really see no need for a single captain or single season captain until U14. Until that age players are still developing their personality, maturation, approach to the game and their commitment. I do not have players vote on a captain because it is often becomes a popularity contest but I do discuss the choices with my assistant coaches. I let the team know before the season who I selected as captain. I share my decision making and why I he or she was selected. I want the captain to be the liaison between myself and the team throughout the season.

Mike Barr

Technical Director, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

By Mike Barr

WHEN SELECTING A CAPTAIN I LOOK FOR THE FOLLOWING QUALITIES:

Confidence on and off the field Awareness of any issues teammates may be experiencing and a willingness to assist the coach in solving or handling those issues. Comfort in approaching the coach with suggestions or questions Leading by example… first to training, high work rate, communication. Sense of humor Honors the game and rules. Approaches referees in a calm, under control manner while on the field. Has the ability to motivate not only himself or herself but their teammates as well. 26

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FINDING THE RIGHT SOCCER CLUB FOR YOUR CHILDREN

Eight Simple Guidelines to Follow

1.

Clubs should meet the needs of individual children with a wide range of abilities from U6 to U18, in an inclusive environment that accommodates children who are involved with other sports, the arts, and family activities. Choose a club that meets not only your child’s needs but also the family’s.

6.

The club should have a quality, recreation program that smoothly transitions to travel if a family decides to have their child play at a higher level.

3.

7.

4.

8.

The club should attempt to educate coaches at every level through US Soccer’s Education pathway. Clubs should evaluate their costs to play and make sure all families at every economic level are provided the opportunity to play. Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

Training sessions at every level should be well organized, fun and focus on individual and team development not winning at all costs. Clubs should make sure each team is playing in a competitive environment for their age and ability. Players ages U8 to U12 should have equal playing time. Within that environment clubs should limit the number of competitive, reasonably priced tournaments a team plays in each season. As teams age (U15 through U18) and the level of play improves, college showcase events should be part of the year’s schedule.

2.

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5.

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Try-outs held for travel teams at the conclusion of the spring season to allow players to finish with their team.

A club should have a mission statement with a board of directors who are accountable to assuring the growth of players mentally, physically, and emotionally.


5 TIPS

FOR DOING WELL IN THE CLASSROOM

Playing club soccer can be a major commitment and requires players to dedicate a lot of their time to practice, games and travel. It is not always easy to balance everything. Here are some tips for the classroom. By Teresa Rook, ODP 13U 2007 Lanco/Harrisburg Girls, 2nd Grade Hambright Elementary

MANAGE TIME PLAN AHEAD. TIME management is crucial as you navigate school, sports, jobs and eventually your career. If you know you have soccer practice, make sure your school work is done the day before, or the time in between school and soccer practice. There is always time for both if you plan accordingly!

ORGANIZE YOUR DAY USE A CALENDAR OR notebook to keep track of all your assignments. Set reminders if you tend to forget assignments or things you need for school. You are a student-athlete. The student part

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should always come first. You will not be able to play your sport without completing all of your assignments.

USE YOUR SUPPORT SYSTEM THERE IS ALWAYS SOMEONE available and able to help you at school. Let your teachers know about your heavy schedule, so they are prepared to accommodate your needs. If you do not understand something you are learning, ask for clarification. If you are unsure when your assignment is due, ask right away. If you are falling behind in your studies, request help and be willing to accept feedback. Teachers, counselors and school staff want you to succeed, so utilize those around you!

epysa.org

MAKE GOOD CHOICES SURROUND YOURSELF WITH people that want you to succeed and are making the right choices. Friendships are important and so are the things that you choose to do together. Have the type of fun that your teachers, coaches and parents will be proud of. Listen to rules and expectations in your classroom. Just one bad choice could cost you a game or an entire season. Respect others in your class and do not interfere with their learning; help others to learn by being present and supportive of the classroom learning environment.

GIVE 100% ALWAYS TRY YOUR BEST. You run hard at practice, you make strong tackles and score goals. Give that same effort in your classroom. The hard work will pay off. Teachers notice your hard work. You do not have to be the smartest student or the one with the best grades, but make sure no one works harder than you.


What are the evaluators looking for when they observe players during try-outs? Players attending tryouts should recognize what the coaches will be looking for when they observe play. Often times there may be information provided to players that may not benefit their identification. Hopefully, this information may assist parents and players alike. By Mike Barr

SPEED

TRANSITION

PURE SPEED IS A HUGE benefit in any sport but often times in soccer, mental speed (decision making with and without the ball under pressure) can allow players to compensate for lack of pure speed.

MOVING FROM ATTACK TO defense and defense to attack quickly, from any position is a strong indicator of a high level player. If a coach notices a player who does not seem involved, he or she will obviously be overlooked.

TOUCH FIRST TOUCH MAY BE THE most critical technique for a soccer player. Receiving balls on the ground or air swiftly and in preparation for their next decision, with a sense of comfort, makes the game easier to play. Balls bouncing in the air from an inside of the foot collection and balls received in the air with the wrong surface and not moved to space or to feet are areas we examine consistently.

HANDLING THE USE OF BOTH FEET IN PASSING AND finishing makes for more opportunities for every player. Watching a player take extra touches to get the ball to his or her strong foot may result in losing possession or a poor decision. Using the proper foot surface inside or instep for passing or shooting also comes into play.

DETERMINED PLAY ON FIFTY FIFTY BALLS (TACKLES AND ESPECIALLY on head balls) adds to a player’s worth in the eyes of evaluators. In tackles we are looking for the player to go in hard and regain possession.

COMFORTABILTY Mike Barr

Technical Director, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

OVERALL COMFORT WITH THE ball, with not a sense of panic when in possession, is critical to the ODP level player. Confidence and enthusiasm are recognized quickly.

DECISION MAKING WHEN TO POSSESS THE BALL OR TAKE A PLAYER ON WITH not a sense of panic, especially in the attacking third, is an attribute that will assist a player in making the team.

COMMUNICATION TALK FROM AN INDIVIDUAL, ESPECIALLY ON THE defensive side of the ball, makes the game easier for the entire team.

PASSION PASSIONATE PLAY WITHIN THE EIGHTEEN, WHETHER ON attack or defense, brings out notice from the coaches in attendance.

PACE PACE AND ENDURANCE DURING THE TRY OUT AND recognizing when there is a time to recover are also areas that we look for during evaluations. Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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19U BOYS:

LVU-FPA 2002

15U BOYS:

FC Europa 2006 Elite

16U GIRLS:

Philadelphia SC Coppa 05 Rage

17U BOYS:

PA Dominion FC 2004 Boys

2021 US Youth Soccer National Championships Qualifiers

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During the 2021 National League Playoffs, four teams from Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer have qualified and punched their tickets to the 2021 US Youth Soccer National Championships this summer. Congratulations on an awesome accomplishment!


CHAMPIONED BY 3X USWNT GOLD MEDALIST HEATHER MITTS Train Like Legends combines world class programming & instructional videos with a supportive community designed to foster positive growth. Train Like Legend’s innovative digital platform enables any team or player to train alongside professional soccer players without schedule or location getting in the way.

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UPCOMING GRASSROOT REFEREE

FIELD SESSIONS FOR 2021 CERTIFICATION Classes for 2022 (and the remainder of 2021), will begin after July 1 LOCATION

DATE

TIME

Fort Washington, PA

6/6/2021

1pm-5pm

Scranton, PA

6/12/2021

9am-1pm

REFEREE SHORTAGE: WITH THE IMPACTS of COVID 19 over the last 12 months, new referee training has been very limited. We typically have about 3000 referees in Eastern Pennsylvania. We replace about 1/3 of the referees due to attrition each year. Our numbers today sit at 1,950. Well below our pre-covid timeframe. This is not unique to our state. This is an issue in all states and in professional levels. We have been fortunate in the Fall 2020 as the return to play numbers were below 2019. Spring is now here and we are seeing club/league activity quickly returning. Please be patient while we continue to recruit and train new referees. Things we have been doing to increase recruitment: 1. Hosting more classes and allowing more attendees (in accordance with social distancing) 2. Communications to previous referees who may have been out of the ref position for 1-3 years 3. Communicating w/ clubs and leagues to offer entry level classes. Want to become a referee or host an entry level course? Visit www.epsarc.org for more information.

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LAWS OF THE GAME: CLARITY FOR SMALL SIDED WHEN PLAYING SMALL SIDED (U9-U10) WITH A buildout line, an opposing team must retreat behind the buildout line until the ball is “put into play”. There are two scenarios that apply 1. When the goalkeeper has saved a ball and has possession. The opposing team must retreat to the buildout line. The ball is in play once the goalkeeper tosses or kicks the ball. 2. On a goal kick, the opposing team must retreat behind the buildout line. The ball is in play when it is kicked and clearly moves. It does not need to leave the penalty area (aka the 18). In either case, the team in possession of the ball, can at any time, take a quick restart before the opposing team has a chance to retreat. If they do so, they do it at their own risk. The opposing team can turn and challenge.


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H C R A E S WORD IA & TRIV

Test your soccer knowledge by finding these words in the word search and answering the following trivia questions.

T U O B A S D R WO SOCCER

SOCCER TRIVIA WHAT IS REQUIRED OF YOU TO WEAR TO PLAY IN AN ORGANIZED GAME OF SOCCER?

WHO IS ALLOWED TO TOUCH THE BALL WITH THEIR HAND?

HOW LONG DOES AN ADULT STANDARD MATCH LAST?

SHINGUARDS KNEEPADS SWEAT BAND GLOVES

ANYONE THE REFEREE THE GOALKEEPER THE CAPTAIN

60 MINUTES 45 MINUTES 90 MINUTES 120 MINUTES

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org


DRAWING CONTEST

We encourage all soccer players to enter our drawing contest. The winner will be featured in the digital edition of Touchline Magazine and honored on social media. Submitting a drawing couldn’t be any easier, just simply draw in the available space and submit your drawing to: The rules for the contest can be found on that page. Don’t wait because the contest ends June 30.

SCAN THE QR CODE TO ENTER YOUR DRAWING

WHICH ONE OF THESE IS NOT ESSENTIAL IN SOCCER?

WHAT PART OF THE BODY CAN’T TOUCH THE BALL?

THERE ARE HOW MANY OFFICIAL FIFA SOCCER RULES?

SHOES SHIN PADS SOCKS UNDERWEAR

HEAD CHEST ELBOW KNEE

7 17 70 177

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

37


TAKE A LOOK AT UNION JERSEYS OVER THE YEARS Since joining the MLS in 2010 as an expansion team, the Philadelphia Union has worn many jerseys on game day. Which of these options if your favorite?

2010

2018 38

2014

AWAY UNIFORM

2021

AWAY UNIFORM

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

HOME UNIFORM

AWAY UNIFORM


DESIGN A SOCCER KIT

Use these Nike templates to design your own soccer kit. Be creative and use your favorite colors and designs.

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer


Pics of the

40

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org


Pitch

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

41


Pics of the Pitch

42

Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org


Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Announces

2021 Grow the Game Fund

SCAN ABOVE TO APPLY

E

astern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer is relaunching its program as the Grow the Game Fund. Formerly the Development Grants program aimed at infrastructure, the Grow the Game Fund is directed at supporting projects at the local level, via our membership, to include more people in soccer. These projects should be designed for the long-term growth of the game in support of Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer’s mission and vision; to enable our members to achieve the shared goals of our purpose; and to be recognized for excellence in participation, spectator appeal, competition and gender equity. Generating new ideas and programming will ultimately increase interest and participation. To grow the game, we as a soccer community, must seek new and creative ways to bring more players, coaches, referees and administrators into the sport. We need to generate ideas and programming to generate greater interest and participation. We must develop sustainable programs to continue to regenerate our

soccer population. Today’s players become tomorrow’s coaches and administrators. Through our membership, we can develop and instill a lifelong love of the game for the next generation and perpetuate its growth. The specific goal of any proposal must be to increase the number of registered players, licensed coaches, certified referees or trained administrators. In addition, supporting growth, inclusiveness and opportunity for girls, women, people of color and lower economic communities is paramount to reflect the global nature and appeal of the game as well broaden our membership.

Grow the Game Fund 2021-2022 The Fund will apply the following criteria in awarding a grant: The ability of the program or activity to recruit and retain the number of Eastern Pennsylvania Youth soccer players. Intramural and recreation programs to receive priority as the entry point for most new participants. The ability to train more coaches through US Soccer/Eastern Pennsylvania coaching education. The ability to recruit and retain more referees through US Soccer/Eastern Pennsylvania referee programs.

The ability of the program or activity to increase the visibility of the game in their community. The ability of the program or activity to have a positive impact on their club and their community. The ability of the program or activity to improve conditions that may currently have negative effect on achieving any of the above.

Innovation and creativity is welcomed and encouraged. Replication of other known, successful projects is acceptable. The application is available, online, and will be open April 26 until May 31. Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

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QUARTERLY

CALENDAR MAY 2021 2

ODP Friendlies with Maryland

2

Coaching Education | National D-License

22

NCS (U12-U17) Finals & Presidents Cup (all ages) Finals

ODP Training

JUNE 2021 2

ODP Training Final Day

5-6

ODP East Region South ODP Event

6

NCS (U18-19/20) Finals

12

Challenge Cup FInals

19-20 ODP East Region South Event Championships 24

Coaching Education | National D-License Lancaster Inferno (All Female)

25- July 1 USYS East Region Championship, Hammonton NJ

JULY 2021 6-10

Regional ID Selection

7-11

USYS National Presidents Cup, Des Moines, IA

20-25 USYS National Championships, Bradenton FL 24

USYS AGM, Bradenton FL

24

Coaching Education | National D-License

31

Coaching Education | National D-License

AUGUST 2021 7

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Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer

epysa.org

Coaching Education | 11v11 In-person Grass Roots License


Profile for A.E. Engine

Touchline | Spring 2021  

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