2017: A Year in Review
With 2017 quickly drawing to a close, the time has come for the world to look back at a year full of just about everything. The sports world was all over the chart with emotions, from ecstasy to disappointment, and everything in between. The Clemson Tigers overcame a second half deficit to become the first ACC team to win the College Football Playoff. Super Bowl 51 ... happened. Atlanta United stormed on to the MLS scene in style, exceeding everybody's expectations. Toronto FC won their first MLS Cup in club history. The United States will not be in Russia next Summer for the first time in thirty years. The Houston Astros won their first World Series. Once again, the Cleveland Browns are pushing an 0-16 season. 2017 has been exciting to say the least, and right here in Peachtree City, the landscape of soccer continued its growth on Highway 74.
PDL Club Showing Signs of Growth
While the 2017 season may not have been the season that everybody hoped it would be, the sun continues to shine over MOBA Soccer Academy, and potential is brewing underneath the turf. While the club suffered through a 2-10-2 season that saw them finish at the bottom of the division table, the latter part of the season showed that MOBA had the pieces to compete, they just needed to be utilized in the right way. After starting a dismal 0-6-1 including two losses to their Tennessee rivals, MOBA and Nashville SC U23 met in a third matchup in Nashville on June 21st. In a match that most would have written off as a Nashville win before it even started, MOBA came out of the gates on fire, scoring two goals inside thirty minutes to lead before Nashville brought things level just after the break. While things seemed to be heading toward a draw, MOBA showed they had some resilience, and after Nashville went down to ten men, MOBA's Michael Brezovsky headed in the winning goal in the eighty-fourth minute. Finally earning their first victory (and becoming the first team to defeat the then-first place Nashville at home) seemed to give MOBA some confidence as they were able to go 1-1-1 in their next three before closing the season on a three match slide. Things could have gone a lot better, however there were a number of bright spots. Todd Fidler cemented his spot in MOBA lore as he became the first player to score five goals in PDL play with the yellow and black, as well as becoming the first player in club history to be recognized in the PDL Team of the Week in week 8, as he was named an honorable mention following two great performances. Edmundo Robinson took everybody by surprise by scoring four goals in five games, one of which was a late equalizer that set up Fidler's winner a few minutes later against Tri-Cities. Michael Brezovsky took home the #MOBAProud Man of the Year Award in a landslide victory. With newly promoted head coach Omar Jarun at the helm and Puerto Rico Islanders great Nicholas Addlery by his side, MOBA has the coaching staff to be one of the top of teams in the league next season, and if the right talent finds its way to Peachtree City, things could be far better than imagined. For information of tryouts, or to sign up for PDL tryouts, click here.
WPSL Finds Its Way to Peachtree City
On the women's side of the ball, MOBA announced back in March that the Women's Premier Soccer League would be coming to Peachtree City in 2018, and in early November, former Northern Ireland international Campbell Chapman was given the reins of the team. An experienced professional with a wealth of coaching experience, Chapman seems like the perfect fit to guide the women's club through their first season in, arguably, the most competitive women's league in America. Built up of over 100 clubs across the country and Canada, the WPSL has a history of supplying some exciting women's football, and with the addition of a women's side, the development pyramid that has been constructed at MOBA has officially been completed. Tryouts for the WPSL team have been rescheduled to March 18, 2018, and information on how to tryout can be found here. The season will be taking place during the summer months alongside the men's club.
MOBA Youth Rising to the Top
Creating a youth team in Georgia is a huge undertaking, and with the likes of AFC, Concorde, and Atlanta United around, the competition is fierce, however MOBA have made exactly the right moves to be successful. Hiring a very experienced and professional coaching staff that includes Michael Rodriguez, Omar Jarun, and Brian Wilson, the youth clubs have been some of the most successful clubs in Georgia during 2017, with some of the highlights being the Boys U16 Elite team going undefeated after training in Spain and the Girls U11 team winning the 2017 GSA PUMA Invitational. Despite the competition, MOBA is quickly becoming one of the top spots for youth soccer in Georgia, and they will look to continue their success during 2018.
2017 was a year full of excitement for MOBA Soccer Academy, not just in its teams, but also some of the premier events that took place there, including Kelley O'Hara's winter camp, a summer College ID Camp, and Fall and Christmas Markets. While the year may be ending, the history of MOBA Soccer Academy is just beginning, and the future is very bright.