To celebrate Black History Month, EDP Soccer is proud to honor fifteen of the best Club Directors participating in EDP Soccer programs. Each Club Director selected has done tremendous work on and off the field for their club and helped elevate the sport of soccer in their communities. Congratulations to each of these outstanding Directors!
FC COPA ACADEMY
Dave Barbour is now a Technical Director at FC Copa Academy, and has one almost every trophy you can in youth soccer. A long time director for several clubs in New Jersey, he recently won the USYS National Championship in 2018 with SJEB Rush 2002 girls. The squad also won 2 USYS National League Division titles and 4 NJYS State Cup Championships. He is a former coach at Saint Joseph's University and also New Jersey Wildcats when they were a member of the W-League. He has helped place countless players in college programs, and also youth national and regional teams. As a player, Barbour played collegiately at American University.
NEW JERSEY SURF
Leon Brown is one of the most respected club directors in all of New Jersey. After serving as club director of GPS New Jersey, Brown is now a Director with New Jersey Surf. With Brown’s leadership, the club has grown to one of the largest and most successful in the state. He has helped the club expand its footprint throughout the state, working with several clubs helping them create premier branches at their club. As a college player at Wheeling Jesuit University, Brown was a two-time NSCAA Academic All American and two time Athletic All-American Awards in 2002 and 2003 and was also WVIAC Player of the Year in 2003. Brown was also a member of the highly successful South Jersey Barons USL PDL teams in the early 2000’s.
As President of Coppermine SC, Bulls has helped the club become one of the the largest in Maryland, and has guided them through two successful mergers with both Premier SC and Harford FC United. He has also helped the club secure state-of-the-art facilities, including reconstructed athletic turf fields, fitness gyms, and a top-notch futsal center for the complete soccer experience. Bulls also coordinated a partnership with Southampton FC, creating a pathway to the English Premier League. As a youth player, Bulls won both a US Soccer Development Academy National Championship and US Youth Soccer National Championship. He also had a successful collegiate career at Division 1 program UMBC, where he was named All Conference, All Region and All American. Following college, Bulls was signed by MLS club Columbus Crew.
QUICK TOUCH FUTBOL
In 2016, Buule created Quick Touch Futbol – a club where his vision could come to life. The mission of the club is to promote an attractive, creative and organized style of soccer, with a positive learning environment that reinforces the principles by which to train, compete and pursue excellence. In the club's first five years, Buule has done just that. Buule’s teams are now known as playing some of the most attractive soccer in EDP Leagues and Tournaments. In addition to the club, Buule runs a training company named Pro-Elite Training, and has worked with hundreds of players as one of the top technical trainers in the state. As a player, Buule moved to the United States from Uganda at the age of 14 and became a two-sport athlete at Memorial High School in West New York, NJ. In college, Buule first attended Tyler Junior College, one of the top Junior College soccer programs in the nation. After Tyler Junior College, Buule moved back to New Jersey to play at Rutgers Newark, where he set the then school-record for victories with 13 and earned their first-ever NJAC Championship Tournament berth. Buule finished his career at Rutgers Newark ranked fifth in points and points per match, and third in goals scored.
CAPITAL AREA SOCCER ASSOCIATION
Richard Chinapoo came to the United States from Trinidad and Tobago in 1978 to attend Long Island University where he was a four-time All American, and was named to the school's Hall of Fame in 2001. After college, Chinappo played for the world famous New York Cosmos with some of the best players in the world, and also was a part of the Trinidad and Tobago National Team. In addition to the Cosmos, he spent time with several of the top indoor professional teams around the country, and in 1998 started his coaching career as a player-coach with the Harrisburg Heat before going into coaching full time in 2001. Chinapoo now serves as the Technical Director for Capital Area Soccer Association, who have multiple teams in the USYS National League Conferences managed by EDP Soccer. Chinapoo holds his USSF ‘A’ license, and has built one of the strongest coaching staffs in all of Pennsylvania. His coaching philosophy is to provide an environment of learning, while also developing a passion for the game and to use the game to teach life lessons and values, to create a true team atmosphere where there is one unified goal.
GO PREMIER SOCCER CLUB
Kevin Gnatiko is the founder of Go Premier Soccer Club located in Gaithersburg, MD. Now coaching for more than 10 years, Gnatiko has developed players of all ages. Making sure he gives back to the community, the club offers free skill clinics during the winter for players aged 5-14 and also offers soccer tot classes for players under the age of 5. The club also offers advanced skill training, small group training and private training. Born in Togo, Gnatiko moved to Maryland at a young age, and would go on to play college soccer at UMBC where he was an All Conference performer. Following college, he signed professionally with Crystal Palace Baltimore.
MILTON YOUTH SOCCER CLUB
Shayne Griffin is Technical Director of Milton Youth Soccer Club, and has helped the club become one of the strongest in Ontario. Griffin has been named Competitive Coach of the Year twice, in both 2018/2019 and 2019/2020. He also led the ‘04 boys to be champions of the prestigious Ontario Cup in back-to-back seasons. In addition to the success in Canada, the club has been a staple at EDP Showcases in recent years, which has helped them send numerous athletes to play college soccer. Griffin was also instrumental in launching the EDP Canada Qualifier, helping to launch and host to the event the last few years. He holds his Ontario Provincial ‘B’ License and is a candidate for the National ‘B’ license.
UNITED PHILLY SOCCER CLUB
Originally from England, Gloda Konga was recently named Director of Coaching of United Philly Soccer. Konga came to the club with over 10 years of coaching experience, most recently with University of Valley Forge and Haverford College. Konga has also worked as an assistant coach with Buxmont Torch FC (NPSL) and was the Director of Coaching at Germantown Soccer Club. Off the field, he has worked with Athletes In Action and Ambassadors Football on several international soccer missions. As a player, he was a member of the Cloud County Community College soccer team that won the NJCAA National Championship. He then joined NCAA Division I program Liberty University and played professionally for the Philadelphia Fury for two years. He is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Sports Leadership from Concordia University and is expected to graduate in 2021.
Darren Marshall is the Girls Director of Coaching for the 15U-19U teams at Manhattan SC. The teams are a part of the USYS National League Conferences. Darren holds his USSF ‘A’ License, NSCAA Premier Diploma, US Youth Soccer “Y” License and English FA Youth Certificate. Arriving from NEFC in 2014, Darren has more than 20 years of coaching experience to help guide one of New York’s top clubs. Darren also has experience as a professional coach with the Boston Breakers from 2009-2013, and played collegiately at University of Maryland Eastern Shore.
Jarice Manson is the Academy Director at Sporting CT, and also serves as the clubs College Prep Director. As College Prep Director, Manson uses his experience as a college coach to help players in the club on their pathway to college, giving yearly seminars to the high school aged players. Before joining Sporting CT, Manson worked with Oakwood SC for 7 years after a stint with Northeast United Premier SC. In 2008, he was named Connecticut Junior Soccer Association Boys Coach of the Year. At the college level, Manson has coached at both Mitchell College and Eastern Connecticut State University. As a player, he was named two-time NJCAA All-New England First Team at Manchester Community College and led the program to a NJCAA Region III championship in 2004.
As Director of Operations and former Technical Director for Maryland United, Pat Noel has helped the club become one of the most successful in the state. He was the first coach in the club to win a Maryland State Cup, and has led six different teams to state titles, including teams on both the boys and girls side. Prior to Maryland United, he was the Freestate Soccer Alliance Director of Coaching from 1999-2013 and also served on the Maryland ODP Staff from 1995-2003. He also has experience on the Georgetown University Women’s staff and as a college scout for Philadelphia Union.
MARYLAND RUSH MONTGOMERY
Ellis Pierre is the Director of Coaching for Maryland Rush Montgomery. Ellis joined the club in 2017 after a long history of success in the DMV area, including 13 years with Bethesda SC. At Bethesda SC, he was Director of Young Player Development and Director of Coaching for the girls program. He has won over 20 State Cups, multiple Regional Championships, and a National Championship with the Washington Freedom Super-Y league program. In addition to his success in the youth space, he has also been a collegiate coach University of Maryland and Howard University.
MET OVAL ACADEMY EAST
After an extremely successful playing career, Yannick Salmon returned stateside in 2014 and began his coaching career. Salmon’s goal with coaching was to develop top players around New York City, the soccer hotbed where he grew up playing. Initially coaching with Woodhaven FC, Salmon is now Director of Met Oval Academy East, a branch of the club which is part of MLS Next. In the club’s first season with the USYS National League North Atlantic Conference, Salmon won EDP Soccer North Atlantic Zone 2 Coach of the Season. In addition to his work with Met Oval, he owns Salmon Soccer, a supplemental training program for players to develop outside of their team training sessions. As a player, he was Nassau County Player of the Year in 2006, and played collegiately at University of Maryland and Rutgers University. He was a part of the Jamaica U17 and U20 National Teams, and was drafted 27th overall by Chicago Fire in the 2011 MLS Supplemental Draft, and also played for MYPA in Finland.
Moussa Sy started SUSA Soccer in 2001, and in the last 20 years, has built the club into one of the biggest and strongest in the nation. Moussa was the only coach to win the EDP Open Cup during the first three years of the competition, and is a coach that is truly adored by all of his players. SUSA participates in several of the top leagues in the country, and recently built a new turf facility in the heart of Long Island. As a player, Moussa came to the United States from the Republic of Guinea to attend Dowling College. He became the first player in NYCAC history to garner Player and Rookie of the Year honors in the same season. That season, he totaled 52 points with 22 goals, was a college All American, and was later inducted into the Dowling College Hall of Fame. Moussa also played professionally for the Long Island Rough Riders for 6 years.
PENN ALLIANCE SELECT
Chris Williams is the Director of Coaching at Upper Dublin SC, Penn Alliance Select and owner of YTP Sports. In 2016, Williams was one of the founders of Penn Alliance Select, formed as a joint premier soccer program by Hunter Soccer Club and Upper Dublin Soccer Club as a place for the premier players in the area. Chris has helped grow the club, creating top teams to play in the USYS National League Mid Atlantic Conference, and developing the 2004 boys team to one of the top competitors in the region. In addition to his role as a club director at two clubs, Williams owns YTP Sports, which does team training, individual training, futsal, camps, and also hosts a podcast. As a player, Williams played collegiately for Philadelphia University from 2002-2005. He also has experience as a player for the Ocean City Barons, Miami FC, Philadelphia Kixx, Baltimore Blast, PA Roar, Harrisburg Heat, SHB Da Nang and San Antonio Scorpions.