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DMV UNITED Formed in Response to COVID-19

By DC Stoddert Staff, 03/31/20, 12:45PM EDT

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WASHINGTON - DMV Soccer Organizations Unite in Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic to Support the Region’s Soccer Community In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, area soccer clubs and organizations have joined to form DMV UNITED. The group consists of clubs large and small that provide soccer programming, coaching, recreational leagues and travel programs for the area’s youth. Just as professional leagues have currently suspended play, the pandemic is also affecting the area’s youth soccer programs. DMV UNITED formed to provide organizations with a way to share ideas, resources, and best practices in these unprecedented times. Thomas Park, Executive Director of Alexandria Soccer Association said, “The DMV UNITED initiative has brought together organizations across the beltway region to join in sharing best practices for supporting player development remotely and keeping them active at home. By sharing these best practices, along with club management tactics, the DMV United team stands ready to deliver impactful programming the moment it is safe for our community to return to play." 

As we continue to deal with the evolving health crisis caused by the COVID19 pandemic, the clubs who have joined DMV UNITED are placing the highest priority on the health and safety of players, coaches, and staff. Collectively we believe that we need to plan for the future, and the steps taken now will allow us to survive this crisis and come out better on the other side when we can return to play. DMV UNITED acknowledges that there are still many unknowns, but we plan to help the DMV soccer community return to normal life as soon as possible. “I believe that a unified effort with clubs in the DMV will allow us to continue to provide some of the best recreational and travel programs in the country,” said Craig Blackburn, Executive Director of the Soccer Association of Columbia. 

DMV UNITED has established a set of principles that are guiding our working group moving forward. 

• We share the responsibility to pause programming until health departments advise that structured play is safe for all 

• We share thoughts for all those affected by the virus with commitment to supporting community members in need 

• We share our commitment to supporting player development with remote training resources and individual guidance 

• We commit to working as a UNITED soccer community to deliver the highest quality and most impactful programming ever, once we are able to resume structured activity. 

• We will support one another as we navigate organizational challenges and will not leverage hardships incurred by clubs during the COVID-19 crisis 

The member clubs of DMV UNITED recognize that each club’s situation is different during this period. While we are competitive on the field, the DMV UNITED community has pledged to be supportive off the field. DMV UNITED recognizes that the survival of all clubs in the DMV area is vital to a healthy and strong soccer community moving forward. “We are fortunate in the DMV to be surrounded by high quality youth soccer clubs who value cooperation and cohesion as much as competition. This collegial spirit is critical to club administrators and coaches — now more than ever — as we all work to support our families and keep players engaged with the game,” stated Jennifer Gootman, Executive Director of DC Stoddert Soccer. 

The DMV UNITED group will continue to work together to provide resources to our membership throughout this crisis. We will continue to work together to ensure that our soccer community has strong clubs and leagues to return to once we can return to the field of play. 

About DMV UNITED: Soccer is the most played and watched sport across the globe. As the world takes on the unprecedented challenge to stop the spread of COVID-19, our DMV soccer community has UNITED to navigate through this pandemic by supporting our communities and each other, with a goal of returning to the field together stronger than before. For more information please go to www.DMVUnited.org.

WASHINGTON- Recently, four DC Stoddert coaches have gained new coaching licenses. Iain Langstone and Scott Currie earned USSF B licenses, Kate Murphy earned her USSF C license, and Alex Minton earned his UEFA B license. 

“It’s great to see our coaches gaining new licenses,” said Technical Director Khaled Hamami. “It will only help our players in their continued development and will help us strengthen as a club.” 

The USSF B course that Langstone and Currie completed at the National Training Center in Kansas City is designed to introduce concepts that are targeted to coaching players aged 16 to college level. The course is designed to help coaches to observe and identify tactical and technical breakdowns in game situations, as well as learn to develop and implement appropriate training sessions to meet the demands of the game.

Murphy completed the USSF C course, which included two five-day meetings with a six- to eight-week development period in between wherein candidates return to their home environment for assignments and mentoring. The course covers tasks such as coaching training sessions, coaching games, leading players, leading the team, managing a performance environment and more.

Minton received his UEFA B License, where he took the course in England back in 2017 through the Professional Footballers Association. Over the last two years, he has been completing his course work, as well as continuing his field time which is a twelve month process. In November a PFA Coach assessed him on the field, as well as an interview.  This past Christmas he met with a Head of Coaching for the PFA to finalize the license. 

For more information on our travel coaches, go to our coaching staff page at https://www.stoddert.com/travel-coaching-staff.

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