By Michael Lewis
Wanting to clear up any confusion, the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association issued a statement Friday, saying it had not endorsed a candidate in the U.S. Soccer Federation presidential race.
The organization said it was not associated with the Eastern New York State Soccer Association, which administers adult soccer in the eastern part of the state.
ENYSSA president Sal Rapaglia recently endorsed Soccer United Marketing president Kathy Carter for USSF president in a story by Grant Wahl in Sports Illustrated. Rapaglia elaborated on his endorsement in a story at FrontRowSoccer.com.
“Some people have contacted us about the article because they have mistaken us, the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association, with the adult organization involved in the story,” the statement said. “We have no affiliation with that organization.”
Eight candidates are running for USSF president. The election will be held at the federation’s Annual General Meeting in Orlando, Fla. Feb. 10.
“At this point, the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association has not endorsed any candidate running for USSF president,” the statement continued. We take very seriously the responsibility of casting votes on behalf of our members in the upcoming election. We’ve been listening to all the candidates and researching their various platforms as well as sharing our concerns with them. We look forward to watching the U.S. Youth Soccer USSF Presidential Debate in Philadelphia in January. We also welcome input from our 11 member leagues.
“It is crucial that the USSF President represents all members of the Federation from the youth to the adults; both the men and the women; and all the disabled, amateur and professional athletes. We look forward to a candidate that will represent all these members and, most importantly, will best serve our youth members.”
The other seven candidates include four former U.S. national team players — Eric Wynalda, Paul Caligiuri, Kyle Martino and Hope Solo, U.S. Soccer vice president Carlos Cordeiro, Boston attorney Steven Gans and New York lawyer Michael Winograd.
ENYYSA represents 100,000 youth soccer players in the eastern half of New York State.