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Coaches & Staff - YSC Academy
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Coaches & Staff

MANAGEMENT

Earnie Stewart - Sporting Director

As Sporting Director, Stewart will oversee and guide all Union technical and soccer-related decisions working closely with the Union First Team, USL team and Youth Academy. This technical leadership role is one the former U.S. National team and three time World Cup veteran knows well from his current role as Director of Football Affairs at AZ Alkmaar, a club he has guided to Europa League qualification the last six consecutive seasons.

Under Stewart’s technical guidance AZ has developed a reputation for its innovation, player recruitment, and player development methodology. In 2015, AZ Alkmaar was honored with the Rinus Michels Award for having the best youth academy in Dutch football. Stewart was a staple for the U.S. Men’s National Team throughout the 1990’s and early 2000’s, registering 101 caps for the team from 1990 until he retired in 2005. He was a regular starter for USA in the 1994, 1998 and 2002 World Cups and his 111 goals as a professional in the Netherlands make him the highest-scoring American in international club play. Stewart also played in MLS during the 2003 and 2004 seasons and was a member of the D.C. United team that won the MLS Cup in 2004.

Tommy Wilson - Academy Director

Coaching Qualifications:

  • UEFA Pro License Diploma
  • UEFA Advanced License Diploma
  • UEFA Basic License Diploma
  • Scottish FA Youth Director’s Award
  • Scottish FA Advanced Youth License
  • Scottish FA Advanced Children’s License

Coaching Experience:

  • Academy Technical Director and Reserve Team Manager for Rangers FC (Scotland, 2006 – 2013)
  • Head of Coaching and Education for the Scottish Football Association (2004 – 2006)
  • Scottish National Team Coach (2004 – 2007)
  • Head of SFA’s Youth Development (2000 – 2004)
  • Led the U19 National Team to the European Championship Finals in Poland, 2006 (losing to Spain 2-1 in the final)
  • Led the U20 National Team to the FIFA World Cup Finals in Canada, 2007
  • Developed and implemented the much acclaimed Scottish FA UEFA Pro License Diploma

TECHNICAL

Iain Munro – Head of Coaching Development

Coaching Qualifications:

  • UEFA Pro License
  • Scottish FA “A” License

Coaching Experience:

  • Ayr United F.C. Assistant Manager / Team Coach, Scottish First Division (1997 – 2001)
  • Manager / Team Coach, Raith Rovers F.C., Scottish Premier League (1996 – 1997)
  • Manager / Team Coach, Hamilton Academical F.C., Scottish First Division (1992 – 1996)
  • Manager / Team Coach, Dundee F.C., Scottish First Division (1991 – 1992)
  • Assistant Manager / Manager / Team Coach, Dunfermline A.F.C., Scottish First Division/ Scottish Premier (1987 – 1991)
Jeff Cook - Head Coach, Union Academy U18 and Bethlehem Steel FC Assistant Coach

Coaching Qualifications:

  • UEFA Pro License
  • UEFA Advanced Coaching Diploma – SFA “A” License
  • US Soccer Federation “A” License
  • National Soccer Coaches Association of America

Coaching Experience:

  • Head Men’s Soccer Coach, Dartmouth College (2001–2013)
  • Head Men’s Soccer Coach, University of Cincinnati (1996–2001)
  • Assistant Men’s Soccer Coach, Dartmouth College (1994–1996)
  • Head Men’s Soccer Coach, Wheaton College (MA) (1991–1994)
  • Assistant Men’s Soccer Coach, University of Massachusetts (1990–1991)
Chris Brewer - Head Coach, Union Academy U16

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF A License
  • National Youth License
  • FIFA Futuro III

Coaching Experience:

  • US Soccer U18 BNT Assistant Coach  (2012–Present)
  • US Soccer U14 BNT Assistant Coach (2010–2011)
  • US Soccer Technical Advisor (2009–2013)
Darren Back - Head Coach, Union Academy U15

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF National B License
  • NSCAA Advanced National Diploma

Coaching Experience:

  • Houston Dynamo (MLS) Academy, U15 Head Coach (2015-2016)
  • Houston Dynamo (MLS) Academy, U16 Head Coach (2014-2015)
  • Houston Dynamo (MLS) Youth Programs Manager (2014 – 2016)
  • RAGE Soccer Club, Technical Director (2012-2013)
  • Northwestern State University (NCAA D1), Asst. Coach, Women’s Soccer (2010-2012
  • Lenoir-Rhyne University (NCAA D2), Asst. Coach, Men’s Soccer (2008-2010)
Gary Lewis - Head Coach, Union Academy U14

Coaching Qualifications:

  • UEFA A License
  • USSF “A” License
  • FA Academy Managers License
  • FA Psychology for Soccer Level 3
  • FA Youth Module 3

Coaching Experience:

  • National Director of Coaching, FCUSA (2014–2015)
  • Head of Youth Development, Liverpool FC (2008–2014)
  • Lead Academy Coach, Everton FC (2005–2008)
  • Lead Academy Coach, Derby County FC (2001-2005)
Kevin Coleman - Head Coach, Union Academy U13

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF National “A” License
  • NSCAA Advanced Regional Coaching License

Coaching Experience:

  • FC Delco Academy (2008–2013)
  • Villanova University (2010–2011)
  • LaSalle University (2007–2010)
Phil Karn - Head Coach, Union Academy U12 and Union Juniors

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF National “A” License
  • USSF National Youth License

Coaching Experience:

  • YSC Staff Coach (2006–2015)
  • Philadelphia Union U16 Academy Head Coach (2011)
  • Philadelphia University Assistant Soccer Coach (2004–2006)
  • Abington High School Assistant (1999–2003)
Jay Cooney – Union / YSC Youth Goalkeeping Coach / Director of Video Technology

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF National ‘C’ License

Coaching Experience:

  • Assistant Coach, Stanford University (2003 – 2014)
  • Director of Goalkeeping USSF IMT – Northern California (2011 – 2014)
  • Director of Goalkeeping MVLA (2010 – 2014)
  • Assistant Coach, WPS (FC Gold Pride) (2009 – 2010)
  • Assistant Coach, WUSA (San Jose CyberRays) (2001 – 2003)
  • Assistant Coach, William & Mary (2000 – 2001)
  • Assistant Coach, Providence College (1999 – 2000)
  • Head Coach, Wellesley (1995 – 1999)
Adrian Heredia - Union / YSC Youth Goalkeeping Coach / Video Technology

Coaching Qualifications:

  • SAFA Introductory Coaching License

Coaching Experience:

  • First Assistant and Goalkeeper Coach, Eastern University (2014–2016)
  • Goalkeeper Coach and U13 Academy Head Coach, Michael Mount Waldorf – South Africa (2012-2014)
  • Goalkeeper and JV Coach, T3 Soccer Coaching Camps (2007–2011)

Professional Playing Experience:

  • First Team Goalkeeper, Supersport United Soccer Club, Premier Soccer League (PSL) Pretoria, South Africa (2013–2014)
  • First Team Goalkeeper, FC AK, South Africa (2013–2013)
  • First Team Goalkeeper, Club Social Xelaju Mariocamposeco, Guatemala (2012–2013)
Pete Pososki – Director of Talent ID

Coaching Qualifications:

  • USSF “A” License
  • Member of NSCAA

Coaching Experience:

  • University of Pennsylvania, Asst. Men’s Soccer Coach, Recruiting (2005-2011; 2012-2016)
  • Virginia Tech, Asst. Women’s Soccer Coach, Recruiting (2011-2012)
  • Eastern PA Olympic Development Program, Staff Coach (2006 – 2010)
  • Northern Illinois University, Asst. Women’s Soccer Coach, Recruiting (2004-2005)
  • Eastern Michigan University, Asst. Women’s Soccer Coach (2002-2004)
  • Michigan Olympic Development Program, Evaluator, Staff Coach (2002-2004)
  • Eastern Michigan University, Staff Coach – Summer Camps (2000-2010)

SPORT SCIENCE & PERFORMANCE

Dr. Cristina Fink - Director of Sports Psychology

Cristina Fink, PhD is a highly experienced sport psychologist with over 18 years of experience in teaching, counseling and sport administration, counseling clients include Olympic Medalists and World Champions as well as professional and national soccer teams.  Cristina competed in two Olympic Games (Seoul 1988 and Barcelona 1992) and held the Mexican High Jump Record with a 6’4” jump for 22 years.  She has a B.S. in Psychology and a B.A. in Family and Consumer Resources from the University of Arizona, Tucson.  She has a Masters Degree and PhD in Sport Psychology from the Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia (UNED) in Madrid, Spain.  Cristina is the author of a number of published papers and books, and a keynote speaker in many national and international conferences.  She is the Director of Sport Psychology for YSC / Union Youth Development and is responsible for helping implement its core-values and behavioral learning into its soccer education curriculum.  Cristina also supports the Philadelphia Union working directly with first team athletes as directed by Philadelphia Union Technical Staff.  She is the first non-European to be invited to the International Network of Football Psychologists where her peer group includes sport psychologists from top professional European clubs (including Manchester United, Chelsea, and Real Madrid).

Bill Knowles - Director of Recondition and Athletic Development

Bill Knowles is world-renown in the field of sports reconditioning and athletic development.   He is a Certified Athletic Trainer and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with 24 years of experience at the Professional, Olympic, and Elite Junior levels of sport.  He specializes in developing Planned Performance Reconditioning strategies for elite athletes following injury.  These same concepts are also designed for athletes and teams to improve performance and reduce the incidence of injury.

Bill has lectured and trained staff around the world on his concepts of managing joint compromised athletes in their quest for a return to competition following injury.  He has been invited to work with staff and athletes at such Clubs as Manchester United, Real Madrid, Chelsea, Manchester City, The FA, and England Rugby.  His work has brought him high profile athletes such as Tiger Woods, Alex Rodriguez, Peyton Manning, Frank Lampard, Michael Owen, Mario Ballotelli, and swimming legend Dara Torres.

Garrison Draper - Director of Performance

Garrison is an up and coming sport scientist with experience throughout Major League Soccer (MLS). Before coming to Philadelphia, he worked with the Chicago Fire and Seattle Sounders. Garrison has implemented an athlete monitoring system which follows players through physical testing, GPS and Accelerometry, heart rate monitoring, and non-contact injuries. This data is used to better understand response to training and player growth and development. Garrison supports Philadelphia Union Academy, YSC Academy, and Philadelphia Union First Team Players and Staff.

Finn Gundersen – Director of Sport Education

Finn is the former Director of Sport Education at the United States Ski and Snowboard Association and co-founder of Burke Mountain Academy, the first sports academy in the country.  Gundersen has over 40 years of youth development and coaching experience, including coaching at the Olympic and Alpine FIS World Cup levels.  He has worked with athletes from youth grassroots to the elite Olympic level.

Kaiti Jones - Head Athletic Trainer

Kaiti is the Head Athletic Trainer for the Philadelphia Union Academy. She graduated with honors with her Master’s degree of Health Science Business Administration from Florida Gulf Coast University. Kaiti completed her undergraduate degree at Central Michigan University where she graduated Cum Laude. She holds multiple certifications including the Athletic Training Board of Certification, USA Weightlifting Level I Sports Performance Coach, and Corrective Exercise Specialist from the National Academy of Sports Medicine.  Kaiti previously worked with Division 1 athletes from Florida Gulf Coast University’s Men’s Soccer team for four years and Women’s Beach Volley Ball for two years.

Jessica Gaburo - Assistant Athletic Trainer

Jessica holds a Master Degree in Athletic Training from Florida International University, and a BS in Exercise Science from Immaculata University. She is a Board Certified and Licensed Athletic Trainer in both Pennsylvania and Delaware. Jessica works closely with our Athletic Development Staff to provide professional health care for the Philadelphia Union Academy teams and YSC academy. Jessica previously worked with division three university student-athletes while serving as an adjunct faculty instructor within the Kinesiology Department at Wesley College.

Eric Gorman - Athletic Development Coach

Eric has a Masters Degree in Exercise, Science & Wellness and a BS in Sports Management.  He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.  Eric implements the day-to-day Athletic Development programs for all 6 of the Philadelphia Union Academy teams and is instrumental in daily training for all YSC Academy Student-Athletes.  With a background playing collegiate soccer, Eric works closely with the Academy Technical Coaching Staff and the Philadelphia Union First Team Performance Director to ensure the highest level of performance and injury prevention.

Matt Siniscalchi - Athletic Development Coach

Matt holds a Bachelors Degree in Health & Exercise Science from Rowan University and is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist.  Matt works closely with professional and world-class athletes, the Philadelphia Union Academy, and YSC Academy, implementing reconditioning and performance programs.  With a strong-multi-sport background, Matt guides all of our athletes toward becoming better “soccer-playing-athletes”.  This is achieved through the development of a robust foundation that tolerates the physical journey of our athletes.

John Cothran, MS, CSCS - Sport Scientist

John has worked with NCAA Division 1 soccer players, including the University of Kentucky Men’s Soccer Team.  His focus is on physical preparation and performance and recovery trends based on GPS, heart rate variability, and subjective wellness data, which is implemented into training and recovery modalities.  John’s background as a strength and conditioning coach further enhances his approach as a sport scientist.  He supports YSC Academy and Philadelphia Union Academy players and staff.

OPERATIONS

Jim Pierce - Head of Education
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Jason Israel - Equipment Manager / Operations Assistant

Jason joins the Philadelphia Union Academy with extensive team operations experience with NYFC (MLS) and Seton Hall University.  Jason has his Bachelors degree from University of Connecticut, where he majored in Sport Administration.  Jason is passionate about soccer at all levels of play.

If you are interested in seeking a position at the Academy, please see our job openings listed here or email UnionAcademy@philadelphiaunion.com.