At Cinco Soccer, coaches don't just help others play one of the most popular sports in the world: they also specialize in a unique style of play that's growing in popularity throughout Europe and South America. The all-weather athletic facility hosts two springy, rubber in-fill turf fields that are regulation-sized for five-a-side, a play scenario that pits teams of five against each other on a smaller field using a slightly smaller ball. Players can put these arenas to the test in Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday night-leagues for adults and reanimated stone gargoyles. Meanwhile, children's lessons held on a kid-sized five-a-side field instill universal soccer fundamentals from dribbling to shooting. The training facility also features a soccer-themed pub equipped with big-screen TVs and private rooms for children's birthday parties.
Professional soccer officially returned to Tampa Bay on May 8, when a crowd of more than 8,000 fans watched the Rowdies play their debut home game at Steinbrenner Field. Currently headed up by Scottish coach and retired professional footballer Paul Dalglish, the Rowdies are chest-trapping, banana-kicking, and head-butting their way back into the world of black-and-white-spotted balls. Watch them take on the Minnesota Stars, who are ably coached by Manny Logas and hungry to work their way up the 2010 standings. Sideline seats get frenetic fans close enough to observe the fantastic flairs of Division II soccer savants as they attempt to sneak the European pigskin between an opponent’s legs and through the goal zone. Since it's a Thursday game, fans can also take advantage of Thirsty Thursdays, featuring $1 beers from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Fútbol 5 provides soccer aficionados with three outdoor turf fields that host six-on-six games, as well as a multifunctional indoor space for soccer and volleyball. The small pitches host matches and soccer clinics, which teach male and female soccer players aged 6–13 how to properly dribble the ball, change speeds during ball possession, and perform specialty moves designed to best opposing players. Fútbol 5 entertains players before and after their games with a sports bar that has eight big-screen TVs. It also keeps kids and adults fit with Zumba and Zumbatomic classes, which blast calories with dance moves performed to Latin beats.
University of South Florida men's soccer head coach George Kiefer uses his vast experience in NCAA Division I Men's Soccer to help players with raw potential grow into the next crop of soccer superstars. As the director of George Kiefer's USF Soccer Camps, he oversees a staff of college coaches and current players from all around the country. During half-day camps held at the new USF Soccer Stadium and at satellite camps in Lithia and Clearwater, Fla., the roster of trainers builds an environment where each type of player can sharpen their technique and improve their confidence. The goal is to set the foundation early so that kids can free themselves up to be creative with the ball. On 11 Bermuda grass fields, players ages 4?18 practice dribbling, passing, and playing as team.
MVP Arena Sports helps young athletes hone the fundamental footwork of soccer with a score of youth [classes] (http://gr.pn/klFDry) scheduled by age. Coaches flutter around the 13,500-square-foot garden of synthetic turf, guiding 50-minute sessions that introduce youngsters to basic game rules, adrenaline-activating drills, and how to use the soccer net to catch butterflies. Balance, coordination, and ball skills compose the Cottontails class for students 2.5 to 3.5 years old, and Micro Advanced classes summon players ages 6 to 9 to dabble in complex toe tactics and 20-minute scrimmages. Athletes should arrive hydrated and wearing shin guards, and are encouraged to explore the facility’s full-service concession stand, arcade-equipped game room, and candy-encrusted cleats collection following their skill sessions. A full list of classes can be viewed at the online schedule.
Just as soccer is a global sport, Coach Joe Mata started Legacy Soccer Academy to reach as many different people as possible. Home-schooled and traditional-schooled children travel from class to the field and learn how to properly kick a soccer ball and how use their shin guards as a baseball bat in a pinch. Joe and the rest of the coaches steep each practice with lessons on respect, communication, and encouragement. They also offer small-group and personal-training sessions that focus on reaching each kid?s goal, from passing the ball to defending the net to ending the soccer vs. football name debate.