Fuel Soccer Talk: 2019 ANOC World Beach Games qualifying; “Hey, we’re interested in you;” NPSL semifinals set

U.S. Beach Soccer National Team’s roster released

U.S. Men’s Beach Soccer National Team head coach Eddie Soto has named the USA roster for 2019 ANOC World Beach Games qualifying in El Salvador from Aug. 3-5.

Two teams from the tournament will earn berths in the inaugural World Beach Games, to be held in Qatar this October. The multi-sport event will include beach soccer and 15 other non-Olympic beach and water-focused events.

To begin the qualifying tournament, he USA will take on Trinidad and Tobago in the quarterfinals on Aug. 3 at 1:45 p.m. Should the U.S. advance, it will face the winner of Mexico vs. Guatemala in the semifinals.

U.S. Beach Soccer National Team roster

GOALKEEPERS (2): Juan Cervantes (Los Angeles, Calif.), Christopher Toth (San Marcos, Calif.)

DEFENDERS (5): Tanner Akol (Santa Cruz, Calif.), Adriano Dos Santos (Baltimore, Md.), Jason Leopoldo (Scottsdale, Ariz.), Oscar Reyes (Santa Ana, Calif.), Jason Santos (Cardiff by the Sea, Calif.)

FORWARDS (3): Nick Perera (Carlsbad, Calif.), Gabe Silviera (San Francisco, Calif.),  Franck Tayou (Las Vegas, Nev.)SCHEDULE

Why should soccer fans check out beach soccer?

Alentin Sabella and the Open Cup Slingshot

The celebrations said it all. Those too-wide smiles. The tears. It’s a special elation that comes when a group of amateurs, friends and part-timers all, knock a pro side out of U.S. Open Cup. Young Valentin Sabella had just led Florida’s Soccer Soldiers past Charlotte Independence, of the country’s second-tier pro league, to enter rarefied and historic air. If it all ended there, it would have been a legendary Cup story for the 19-year-old forward. But then…the phone rang.

“We were running around crazy and celebrating after the game in Charlotte,” Sabella told of the win in the Second Round of the 2019 Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup in May — a few months after his high school graduation. “One of the guys from the Independence [Operations Manager Auggie Ruiz] came up and said ‘hey we’re interested in you.’ I didn’t know who he was or what to say and he told me to ‘go and enjoy the moment and celebrate, but give me your phone number.’ I didn’t think much about it because we were so overwhelmed with the win in that moment.”


Cosmos B, ASC San Diego play in NPSL semis

This week, ASC San Diego will travel over 2,700 miles to face off with New York Cosmos B in the NPSL national semifinals. San Diego midfielder Michael Kafari believes that his team matches up well with the blue chip New York squad.  And as far as the trip, Kafari says the team has no problem with a little adversity.

“We had to bus to Arizona and play in 104-degree weather,” Kafari said. “We’re used to it.  We’re comfortable being uncomfortable.”

ASC San Diego (15-1-5) picked up a 2-1 win over FC Arizona to claim the West Region title while New York (15-1-1) claimed a 3-1 win over FC Baltimore to win the Northeast.


LET’S TALK: OK, now you’ve read what’s on my mind…what are your thoughts on the above or any other “football” happenings?

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