Friday Roundup: US Soccer names U-20, U-17 head coaches

The Equalizer Staff April 7, 2017 36

Also in today’s roundup the Dash finish preseason on a high note, the Courage add three to their coaching staff, and Lisa De VAnna signs with an Australian semipro team

photo courtesy: U.S. Soccer

photo courtesy: U.S. Soccer

U.S. Soccer has made head coaching hires for the two most prominent youth teams. Jitka Klimkova is the new coach at the U-20 level, and Mark Carr will lead the U-17s. Both have extensive experience in the U.S. Soccer coaching ranks. Klimkova was most recently the U-19 head coach and Carr has been the head coach of the U-15s.

Over the last few years we’ve hired a cadre of Development Coaches as part of a plan to expose them to the international game and develop them into future candidates for our World Cup age-groups,” said Women’s Youth National Teams Director April Heinrichs. “In hiring Mark and Jitka as our U-17 and U-20 coaches respectively, we’re putting two of our best and most experienced coaches in front of our best players. They have age-appropriate head coaching experience on the international level, are familiar with our player pools, methods of coaching, style of play and philosophy. Mark and Jitka will start with their respective teams in their upcoming camps without skipping a beat.”

{USWNT: Lavelle, Dunn shine in 4-0 thrashing of Russia | Will play in Sweden, Norway}

Both teams have clear roles as developmental arms for the senior team, but both will also be focused on their respective World Cups next year. The next U-20 World Cup is in France in August 2018. The U-17s will be in Uruguay in November and December 2018. Both teams had disappointing showings in 2016. The U-20s dropped their final two matches to finish 4th and the U-17s were dumped out in the group stage.

“I love working for U.S. Soccer and continuing to embrace the many challenges of being successful at the international level,” said Klimkova. “I have always dreamed big, had ambitious goals and worked hard to achieve those goals, which are qualities we will ask for from our players. My main motivation is to work with extremely talented players, coaches, support staff to help make all of us better. I look forward to continuing to create a positive and successful culture within our Youth National Teams.”

Added Carr: “Working day in and day out with U.S. Soccer and learning from some incredible people around me while coaching the U-15 Girls’ National Team has prepared me to take on this fantastic opportunity. Moving up with this group is a natural progression that I feel very comfortable with and I’m extremely honored and excited to continue the development journey with this special group of players. My focus will be to help each player grow and develop and continue through our pathway, while at the same time, embracing the opportunity to qualify for the 2018 U-17 Women’s World Cup and then doing our best to win it.”

Dash wrap up preseason with win over texas a&M

The Dash finished their preseason schedule with a 2-1 victory over Texas A&M on Thursday night at the Aggies’ home stadium, Ellis Field. Amber Brooks and Rachel Daly scored for the Dash.

Brooks scored in the 13th minute on a free kick drawn by Caity Heap. But Texas A&M equalized in the 20th minute on a quirky free kick from distance by Briana Alston that fooled Dash keeper Lydia Williams on a bounce.

Daly won it in the 79th minute taking a pass from Cari Roccaro at the top of six and slotting home the decisive goal.

Dash Starting XI: Lydia Williams (Bianca Henninger 46′); Cari Roccaro, Cami Privett, Janine Van Wyk, Claire Falknor; Amber Brooks; Andressa, Caity Heap; Stephanie Ochs (Poliana ’60), Rachel Daly, Melissa Henderson (Crosson 60′)
The Orlando Pride finished their preseason schedule Friday with a 3-0 win over the U.S. U-23s. Stay tuned this weekend for further details.

Courage add three assistant coaches

The North Carolina Courage announced three additions to their coaching staff on Friday. Bill Palladino, Sean Nahas and Nathan Thackeray have all been working with the club throughout preseason but were not officially named to Paul Riley’s staff until Friday. Scott Vallow, who worked came with Riley when the team relocated from Western New York and also worked under Riley in Portland, had previously been named an assistant coach.

“We are delighted with the coaching staff we have put together,” Riley said. “I think it further emphasizes the clubs desire to push the women’s game forward at the professional level while embracing our massively successful youth component.”

{NWSL TEAM PREVIEWS:  Click here to see links to all five previews…so far  |  Pride land Marta}

Palladino’s name is familiar to soccer fans in the state as a long-time assistance to Anson Dorrance at the University of North Carolina. Together they have helped the Tar Heels win 21 national championships since 1982. Palladino is married to Wendy Gebauer Palladino who played for the team and was later a color commentator on WUSA and national team broadcasts.

Nahas has been involved in the local youth scene for more than a decade. In addition to his role as Courage assistant he will also serve as director of the recently announce NC Courage U.S. Soccer Girls Academy. Thackeray played for Bradford City in England and began his coaching career at Young Harris College in Georgia. He has also been the Head of Goalkeeping at the Houston Dynamo Academy and Director of Goalkeeping at CASL and the RailHawks Academy.

Lisa De Vanna signs with Australian semi-pro team

The well-traveled Lisa De Vanna has signed to play for South Melbourne FC in Australia’s Women’s National Premier League. The 32-year old most recently spent some time with Canberra during Australia’s W-League season. FOX SOPRTS News in Australia reported the news.

De Vanna has made many stops in U.S. club soccer. She first touched down in America to play for the Washington Freedom in WPS. After two years there, she joined magicJack. Jim Gabarra, who coached De Vanna at the Freedom, brought her to NWSL to play for Sky Blue, and she enjoyed her best season in 2013. She has since played for the Breakers, Spirit and Pride.

De Vanna has more than 100 caps for Australia and has represented her homeland in the last three World Cups and at the 2004 and 2016 Olympics. She scored four goals in the 2007 World Cup en route to being named to the tournament’s All-Star Team. She was again named to the World Cup All-Star team in 2015.

  • #1Fan

    Musical chairs, except they never take a seat away !

    • Bruce

      Forget the players, the USWNT coaches must have the best union in the country. 100% job security.

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  • tonysocref

    And NWSL has posted the 2017 Rules of Competition and Roster Rules.
    Team Cap $315,000
    Min $15,000
    Max $41,700

    • Rdalford

      imho NWSL team salary cap is too low. leaves team with very little flexibility and may force many/most salaries to be at/near the $15K Min

      18 players at $15K min is $270K leaving only $45K until team hits $315K cap
      If one of those 18 is top intl player at Max ($15K + $24.7K=$41.7) then team only has $20.3K to cover any salaries above $15K Min and/or 19th player

      appears to me that if any player gets paid $41.7K Max, then team could only have full 20 player roster IF they had 1 (or more) allocated/federation players and many/most players would have to be $15K Min level.

      If the $15K Min was intended to be good for players
      Keeping the cap so low at $315K appears to force teams to smaller (18/19) rosters with more players being paid at $15K Min level

      • DNG

        I hadn’t actually done the math but you’re right. Cap will probably need to be raised pretty soon. I agree that there’s too little flexibility for teams whit it like this. I’m guessing some of the smaller team owners are resistant to increasing costs too much too quickly. Sooner or later the league is going to have to try to move forward

        • Steglitz49

          The Cap can only be raised if the income is there.

      • Steglitz49

        The NWSL does not escape Mr Micawber’s observation about attaining happiness and avoiding misery.

      • sedna

        I thought allocated national team players’ salary is not counted towards the salary cap.

        • Rdalford

          allocated/federation players salaries are paid by federations but allocated players do have potential impact on salary cap.
          For any allocated players within the first 18 players on a teams 18 to 20 player roster, the net salary cap impact is a reduction of team salary cap by $15K (the $15K min player salary) for each allocated player within the first 18 players on the roster

          • mockmook

            OK, I missed that part:

            Are you saying a 20 player squad with 2 allocated still has the entire $315k to use on the 18?

          • Rdalford

            Yes, 20 players if 2 allocated, 18 non-allocated, then Team Salary Cap (TSC) of $315K applies to 18 (avg $17,500 player)

            If allocated are within first 18, then TSC of $315K is adjusted (reduced by $15K min for each allocated player within first 18), so 18 player roster with 2 allocated and 16 non-allocated then TSC of $315K reduced by $30K and remaining $285K salary cap is spread across the 16 non-allocated (avg $17,812/player)

            another example, 19 players (6 allocated, 13 non-allocated) then TSC of $315 reduced by $75K (5 allocated within first 18) and the remaining adjusted TSC $240 is spread across the 13 non-allocated players (avg $18,461/player)

            conversely, if 20 players all non-allocated then Team Salary Cap of $315 applies to all 20 (avg $15,750/player)

          • mockmook


            If you have something handy, do you have a document/link that clearly states that each Federation/allocation player “takes” $15k from the available $315k?

            [I’m assuming 18 players]

          • Rdalford

            each Federation/allocated player – within the first 18 – will cause a min player $15K adjustment (effectively a cap reduction) to TSC
            (the wording actually states min $15K players salary spot(s) added but effect is the same as reducation of available TSC)

            The relevant Team Salary Cap Regulations wording is as posted on the NWSL site under “Roster Rules” section (and is posted in full below)
            the relevant text starts with the “if a Team is carrying less … thru to … for the purpose of calculating the total TSC”

            from NWSL site “roster rules”
            Team Salary Cap Regulations
            Team Salary Cap
            In computing the Salary Cap, it is assumed that it is spread across a minimum of 18 Players (if a Team is carrying additional Players because of Roster Relief due or Goalkeeper Replacement, these Players are also included) based on adjustments for Federation Players. Therefore, if a Team is carrying less than 18 Players, minimum salary Player spots are added to the Team’s budget for the purpose of calculating the total TSC (i.e. a Team cannot spread the TSC over 11 Players).

            Team Salary Cap: $315,000.

            Maximum, Minimum Player Salary Budget Charges
            Minimum Salary: $15,000.
            Maximum Salary: $41,700.

            Roster Limits
            18-20 Player Roster
            Teams may have no more than 20 available Players under contract on their Roster at any one time, subject to Injury and Goalkeeper Replacement exceptions.

          • mockmook

            I think the key to understanding this is that a Player is not the same as a Federation Player.

            IOW, a Federation Player is not a Player.

            That is why the minimum of 18 Players (for TSC purposes) has to be goosed to account for the “empty” slots that are “occupied” by Federation Players.

            At least, this is my way to parse this language in a logical manner that comports with what you are saying.

          • Rdalford

            in the NWSL roster rules section titled “league classifications” the terms Player and Federation Player are listed.
            From NWSL rules perspective the terms Player and Federation Player are different and as you note keeping this difference in mind makes it somewhat easier to understand rules.

            for reference, the terms (as defined in NWSL roster rules)

            A Player is a person who:
            Is currently under contract with a Team
            Is not under contract with a Team, but has their rights to play in the NWSL controlled by a Team.

            Federation Player
            A Federation Player is a Player whose compensation is underwritten by a Federation.

          • mockmook

            Actually, I take it all back 🙂

            They do use Federation Player and Player interchangeably (for example when they talk about Roster size).

            So, I stand by my contention that it is not spelled out in the NWSL rules that the team is docked $15k per Federation Player — only empty slots are definitely charged $15k

            Of course, how can you have empty slots if you must have at least 18 players?

            I’m all confused again…

          • Rdalford

            perhaps you should just focus on the part of the text that notes … based on adjustment for federation players
            “it is assumed that it is spread across a minimum of 18 Players (…) based on adjustments for Federation Players”

            “it is assumed that it is spread across a minimum of 18 Players (if a Team is carrying additional Players because of Roster Relief due or Goalkeeper Replacement, these Players are also included) based on adjustments for Federation Players.”

            the text then goes on to describe the adjustment (adding min salary $15K slots as needed to bring the roster – of players subject to salary cap – up to the 18 player roster level)

            For what it is worth,
            This is not a new adjustment. calculating Team Salary Cap by adding in min player salary slots for any allocated players as needed to bring the roster (of players subject to salary cap) up to at least 18 was also in prior versions of roster rules.

            i agree the NWSL rules could have been written more clearly, but the adjustment (add min player slot as needed to reach 18) for allocated players when calculating team salary cap (which effectively reduces the available TSC by min player amount for each allocation/federation player within first 18 on roster).

            I understand that rules are poorly written (almost all NWSL rules are written poorly and not implemented transparently and changed on the fly if necessary) but I think I have kicked this “TSC allocated player adjustment” dead horse long enough.

          • Rdalford

            another way to perhaps make this clearer.
            allocated players are not subject to salary cap, but may impact the available cap since player min $15k salary spots (representing the allocated players) as added as needed to bring the roster spots subject to TSC up to the 18

            note that language specifies “in computing the Salary Cap, it is assumed … spread across 18 players”
            and “if a team is carried less than 18 players, min salary Player spots are added … for purpose of calculating TSC”

  • Silver Frost

    I’d like to see more women coaches and asst coaches in the league. It’s just weird at this point in history to have almost no women in NWSL coaching.

    • AGuest2

      While some of the head coaches in the NWSL probably make a pretty good salary, anyone know what kind of salary along with benefits an assistant coach is able to make?

  • Ethan

    Brooks’ shot was incredibly well-struck, but it looks like the goalkeeper should have been able to parry it over the bar if she set herself up appropriately. A behind the goal view would have been great.

    • Silver Frost

      Amber scored lots of goals in Bundesliga. She has a good shot.

      • Steglitz49

        Indeed. Probably regrets coming stateside.

  • newsouth

    Vlatko Andonovski U13-17
    Lisa Harvey U20

  • Tom F

    and here’s the last game from currently the best darn team in the world

  • JL

    Klimkova isn’t a bad hire. She was the head coach of Canberra United when they won the double in Season 4 of the W-League.

    • mockmook

      Hope you are right.

      I don’t see how they can do worse than French and Snow

  • Dennis Nguyen

    US Women Soccer, picking the wrong coaches, picking the wrong players, picking the wrong formation, picking the wrong developmental system. It is a wonder that we not #100 in the world. It must be an amazing string of luck, this is the only reasonable explanation for us winning anything. That or our opponents have been really, really unlucky.

    • mockmook

      As much as I get weary of some of the over-criticism here (especially when people say X is a terrible choice and then don’t say who is better than X), there have been NUMEROUS “objectively” bad decisions by JE — bad decisions she had to knowingly make:

      Taking the following to WWC15:


      Taking the following to OG16:


      And, that’s just the tip of the iceberg (the most visible, the most clear cut) of her bad decisions — and those decisions alone could have cost the team both the WWC and the OG.

      But, the USA is blessed with a cornucopia of good players who adapt and they can usually overcome the dumb decisions of their coach — so, they were able to eek out a run thru the WWC15 despite JE’s efforts.

    • Denverexpat

      The US has an overwhelming advantage over the rest of the world with the sheer numbers of players to pick from. No where else do so many girls/women play the sport. Hence, mediocre coaches are successful because the talent is there. There are so many more qualified coaches from the college ranks that would be better and more experienced than these choices.