Inter Miami CF Academy Teams & Technical Staff

II: Teams & Technical Staff

The Inter Miami CF Academy was a member of the United States Soccer Federation’s U.S. Development Academy.

UPDATE: April 15, 2020 – US Soccer Ends DA Program

The U.S. Soccer Federation announced April 15, 2020 that it is terminating its development academy, a nationwide youth league encompassing several age groups for both boys and girls, effective immediately.

In a related announcement, MLS said it is forming a new youth competition for the league’s academy teams that might also include non-MLS youth teams.

US Soccer terminates development academy as MLS announces new youth league

The U.S. Soccer Development Academy (DA) was a league that constitutes the top tier of youth soccer in the United States. Formed in 2007, the league featured youth academies and youth clubs from various organizations, including Major League Soccer, and the United Soccer League. It succeeded the Super Y League as the premier youth soccer league in the U.S. The DA’s stated mission was to provide education, resources, and support to impact everyday club environments in order to develop world-class players. Boys and Girls teams were members in age groups ranging from U13 to U18/19.

Inter Miami Academy Teams, with links to the Inter Miami CF and the Development Academy websites.

U19 undefined

U17 undefined

U15 undefined

U14 undefined

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Inter Miami CF scouted over 6,000 players across South Florida in order to select the final 170 elite athletes who are participating in its fully-funded Academy. The group began training in early August.

First Ever Game / First Ever International Appearances

In August, the first ever team to represent Inter Miami CF played in South Korea, competing in the U17 K League Championship Tournament. Over a course of four games, the eighteen players comprising the team went 2-1-1. Inter Miami CF’s U17-18 team concluded its participation in the tournament winning 3-1 against home side of Pohang.

Inter Miami CF Academy U17-18 Team in South Korea | Photo: Inter Miami CF

“We still have a long way to go in bringing our players together playing our style of soccer, but this was a great experience for everyone, and the players had a lot of fun.”

Jason Kreis, Academy Director

The Inter Miami CF Academy played its first regular season game at Orlando on Saturday, Aug. 31, with the first home game taking place on Saturday, Sept. 7, at Broward College South Campus.

Video: Inter Miami CF

Development Academy Schedules and Results

“We’ve found great coaches and personnel from diverse backgrounds and experiences to help us launch an Academy with the right culture, people and philosophy from the beginning.”

The 2019-20 Inter Miami CF Technical Staff. Photo: Inter Miami CF

Inter Miami CF Academy Technical and Coaching Staff 2019-20 Season.

Sixteen full-time coaches and support staff will lead the six boy’s teams ranging from U12 to U19 under the supervision of Jason Kreis and Victor Pastora.

Javier Morales and Juan Carlos Michia, who were announced in February 2019, are joined by a team of coaches and personnel: Brian Haynes, John Deeley, Sebastian Saja, Pedro Cavalcanti, Gibran Tevar, Benjamin Applefield, Julius James, Nick Chase, Carlos Catano, Ricardo Lopes, Jose Mesa and Philippe-Olivier Cineas.

Here are some background details of the 2019-20 Academy Technical Staff. All Academy coaches are U.S. SafeSport certified.

Jason Kreis
Senior Academy Director for U17-U23
U23 Academy Head Coach
Head Coach for the U23 U.S. Men’s National Team

Kreis has contributed significantly to the growth of MLS as a renowned soccer manager and former player. A Nebraska native, he has coached expansion sides Orlando City SC, New York City FC and Real Salt Lake as well as served as assistant coach for the U.S. Men’s National Team under Jürgen Klinsmann.

As a player, he spent most of his career in MLS with Dallas and RSL from 1995-2006, reaching many first milestones including scoring the first goal for Dallas, then known as the Burn, in 1995. He became the first American-born player to win MVP honours in 1999 and the first MLS player to reach 100 goals in 2005. Kreis also has 14 caps for the U.S. MNT and is currently tied for the fifth-highest scorer in MLS regular season history with 108 goals.

Brian Haynes
U19 Academy Head Coach

Haynes brings valuable MLS experience to the Academy as a league player and coach. The former Trinidad & Tobago international had a successful career with the Dallas Burn (now FC Dallas) alongside Kreis from 1996-2000. He hung his cleats to join their technical staff from 2001-06 as an assistant coach.

In 2000, Haynes was honoured with the MLS Humanitarian of the Year award for his extensive work in the community. He most recently coached U16s for the Houston Dynamo (MLS) for three years. Prior to this, he served as the head coach for the Atlanta Silverbacks in the NASL, where he was named the 2013 NASL Coach of the Year.

Haynes also scored for the Soca Warriors in what would be the final goal ever scored against East Germany. He is a graduate of Erskine College. During his Erskine career he scored 61 goals (fourth all-time) and had 40 assists (fourth all-time), and had the ninth-best single-season scoring mark with 21 goals his freshman year.

Javier Morales
U17 Academy Head Coach

Morales is highly regarded as one of the top play makers in MLS history, having spent most of his state-side career with Real Salt Lake from 2007-16, earning the nickname ‘El Maestro.’

He spent his final year in the league with FC Dallas, where he became a member of the elite “50-50 club” of MLS players with 50 goals and 50 assists. The Argentine then transitioned to Dallas’ technical staff. As coach of the U13s, he won an international championship at the Copa Rayados Internacional tournament in Mexico in just one season.

Victor Pastora
Junior Academy Director for U12-U15
U15 Academy Head Coach

Pastora has over 20 years of experience in South Florida’s youth soccer landscape.

The Nicaragua native, who was most recently the Academy Technical Director at Weston FC, has coached at Miami FC as well as held the director of coaching position at Kendall SC, where he brought the U.S. Soccer Federation Academy program to the club after leading many teams to State Cup and National Championships.

John Deeley
U14 Academy Head Coach

Deeley comes to the Club after a tenured position with the University of Connecticut from 1996-2019. He excels at scouting opponents and breaking down the game, both mentally and in terms of analysing game tape. Players and coaches alike consider him among the most tactical minds in the game.

He spent 22 years on the UConn men’s soccer staff and 18 as the associate head coach, helping the Huskies reach the NCAA Tournament 18 times. That stretch also includes the Huskies being ranked in the Top-25 in 18 of the 22 years he has coached. He has seen 41 players get drafted to MLS, most recently Jake Nerwinski (7th overall, Vancouver) and Kwame Awuah (16th overall, NYCFC) in the 2017 MLS SuperDraft. Prior to UConn, Deeley spent eight seasons at Southern Connecticut State in New Haven. A native of North Babylon, N.Y., Deeley holds a BS in Political Science from Southern Connecticut, where he also played midfield from 1977-80. He was inducted into the Connecticut Soccer Hall of Fame in 2014.

John Deeley (left) Photo: University of Connecticut

Pedro Cavalcanti
U13 Academy Head Coach

Cavalcanti returns to Miami after 10 years of coaching across the U.S., Europe and South America, most recently with AS Roma.

The Brazilian, who holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Miami, has held several soccer operations roles on the business side of the sport, including team liaison officer for Colombia’s National Team both for the 2014 FIFA Organizing Committee Brazil and the Copa America Centenario tournament in 2016.

Juan Carlos Michia
U12 Academy Head Coach

Michia’s career spans across 30 years both as a professional athlete and coach. He is known in the community for his scouting talent, having helped many players reach the national youth systems.

Aside from coaching in South Florida, most recently with Weston FC, the Argentine has served as assistant coach for three FIFA World Cups for the U20 U.S. Men’s National Team (2001 Argentina, 2007 Canada and 2009 Egypt).

Gibran Tevar
U12 Coach

Tevar brings over 13 years of academy coaching experience to Inter Miami CF. The South Florida native spent seven years coaching camps for Americas SAA Real Madrid Miami in addition to coaching at Kaptiva Sports Academy and Miami Shores Soccer Club. He is a graduate of Florida International University.

Benjamin Applefield
U12 Coach

Applefield is passionate about youth development on and off the field. He comes to Inter Miami CF from D.C. United (MLS), where he coached the U11 and U12s. Prior to D.C. United, the Connecticut native spent two years coaching for Oakwood Soccer Club, a U.S. Soccer Development Academy club in Glastonbury, CT.

Sebastian Saja
Academy Goalkeeper Coordinator and Coach

Saja brings a wealth of knowledge to the Club as a former international goalkeeper.

The Argentine, who is known as one of the few goal-scoring goalkeepers in the world (19 career goals), has played at the highest levels of the sports for clubs in Argentina, Brazil (Grêmio), Spain (Córdoba, Rayo Vallecano, Gimnastic, Zaragoza), Italy (Brescia), Mexico (Club America) and Greece, including San Lorenzo (145 appearances), Racing Club (169 appearances) and AEK Athens (89 appearances). Saja retired in 2017 with over 500 career appearances in goal and had 24 caps for Argentina’s U20 National Team and 4 caps for the senior team.

Ricardo Lopes
Academy Goalkeeper Coach

Lopes has strong roots with the local soccer community. He joins Inter Miami CF after serving 13 years with the Fort Lauderdale Strikers as an assistant coach and goalkeeper coach. He also provides coaching education for the Florida Youth Soccer Association.

He joined Fluminense F.C. and played there for three seasons winning three Rio de Janeiro State Championships in a row (’83, ’84, ’85) and helping Fluminense win the Brazilian National Championship in 1984. Fluminense had many famous players at that time, including Branco and Romerito. Ricardo and his team were invited to show their talents across Latin America as well as Asia, Europe and Africa. After two more seaons playing with Nautico FC (Recife), Lopes came to Miami to play goalkeeper for the Miami Sharks, who were coached by the captain of Brazil’s 1970 World Cup Champions, Carlos Alberto Torres. After one season with the Sharks, Lopes went into coaching. In his coaching career, he has coached thousands of youth in Florida and Texas.

Ricardo was a goalkeeper on Fluminense FC in the 1980s, pictured here with 1984 Brazilian championship side.

Julius James
Academy Staff Coach

James joins inter Miami CF after concluding a successful 11-year athletic career in MLS, USL and NASL, most notably playing for Toronto FC, Houston Dynamo, DC United and Columbus Crew in the MLS. The native of Maloney Gardens, Trinidad & Tobago is passionate about sharing his knowledge of the game and has provided mentorship opportunities for youth in every city he has lived.

He was also a member of the T&T National Under-17 team that hosted the 2001 FIFA Under-17 World Cup and has notched up sixteen caps for the Soca Warriors’ senior national team.

TORONTO – JULY 05: Defender Julius James #3 of Toronto FC chases the ball with Damian Alvarez #7 of Pachuca during their match on July 5, 2008 at BMO Field in Toronto, Canada (Photo by Paul Giamou/MLS via Getty Images)

Nick Chase
Performance Coach

Chase joins Inter Miami CF after seven years with Weston FC Academy, where he worked with the U15-U16s as well as PDL/USL League 2 from 2012-19. Chase also worked as head fitness coach for the former Fort Lauderdale Strikers in 2015. The former collegiate athlete played for Chattanooga FC (NPSL) from 2010-13.

Philippe-Olivier Cineas
Soccer Operations Coordinator

Originally from Haiti, “Pino” brings extensive administrative soccer experience from his time as assistant director of operations at Weston FC and soccer tournament operations at United Soccer Academy. Pino is a Florida International University graduate.

Gustavo Gomez
Team Administrator / Player Liaison

Gustavo Gomez joins Inter Miami CF from FC Dallas, where he had been a full-time employee since January of 2015. Prior to that, Gomez had a 14-year career in the Mortgage Banking industry. Gomez also served as the Assistant Equipment Manager for Dallas during the 2014 season.

As the Team Administrator with FC Dallas, Gomez took charge of booking travel, hotels, team meals and transportation while the team was on the road. He also assisted players with any off-the-field needs. A native of Colombia who was raised in Miami, Gomez is fluent in Spanish and English. He attended Miami Sunset High School before earning his Bachelors degree from Barry University in Sports Management with a minor in Business.

Juan Mesa
Athletic Trainer

Mesa brings strong experience working with domestic and international athletes to the Club. The Barry University graduate has served as an assistant athletic trainer for the Haitian Men’s National Team, having worked with the team since 2013 through several international tournaments, including Concacaf Gold Cup, CONMEBOL Copa America, FIFA World Cup Qualifiers and the CONCACAF Caribbean Cup.

He joins Inter Miami CF from Johnson & Wales University’s athletic programs, where he was an athletic trainer for eight years.

Carlos Catano
Fitness Coach

Catano was born and raised in Fort Lauderdale. He joins Inter Miami CF from Weston FC Academy, where he was most recently a fitness instructor. The Colombian-American played soccer at both the collegiate and international levels.

“The talent on the field goes beyond the players in South Florida,” said Paul McDonough, Sporting Director for Inter Miami CF. “We’ve found great coaches and personnel from diverse backgrounds and experiences to help us launch an Academy with the right culture, people and philosophy from the beginning.”

The Inter Miami CF Academy: Part I – Origin, Mission and Focus