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Winning and entertaining

After spending the last five years coaching in Italy, coach Rafael Carbajal is looking to create a rejuvenated and competitive team with the CSL’s North York Astros.

The Astros have done all the right things in their north Toronto community – they have a well established pro team, a strong development program with their amateurs and a highly successful women’s program.

But the pros aren’t winning in the CSL and Carbajal has been brought in to change all that.

The Uruguayan-born multilingual Carbajal is seen as the right man for the job. A former professional standout goalkeeper, he has in recent years dedicated himself to coaching and by all accounts, a good one he is. And he knows the local scene (he coached the Astros back in 1999) yet has considerable overseas experience.

“I feel the Astros can win games and I believe they can be attractive to watch at the same time,” he said when appointed recently.

 Working with him will be his long time assistant, Paolo Pacione, now with an honours degree in Kinesiology, he specializes in strength and conditioning.  Both are determined to create an exciting and competitive Astros with an entertaining style of play. The duo will be responsible for both the first and reserve teams.

The project will involve putting together a team that includes players as young as 16 getting exposure at the professional level.  Carbajal believes that young players will get better only if they compete at the higher level.  The team will be traveling to Europe in August to give the young prospects an opportunity to be tested overseas to provide an opportunity for the players to showcase in other countries. They can will then have an opportunity on home turf before the scouts of the new MLS team, Toronto FC.

A similar project was launched in 2001 and was very successful.  Two players remained with Italian clubs, another plays in Germany, and Densil Theobald played in the 2006 World Cup for Trinidad and Tobago. 

In announcing the two appointments to his club, Astros' general manager Bruno Ierullo also explained that the team will hold tryouts and exhibition games to take place on the outdoor FieldTurf at The Soccer Centre in Vaughan during February and March  (weather permitting). The first one is scheduled for Sunday February 4 at 4 p.m., to be followed by a try-out exhibition game at the same time two weeks later on February 18. The pattern will be repeated on March 4 and March 18. Players wanting to aim for the professional level are invited and for those selected, pre-season training starts on April 1.

The Soccer Centre is located at  7601 Martin Grove Road just south of Highway 7.  Telephone: 905 264-9390 extension 0.

To apply go to www.northyorkastros.ca and click on Apply For Tryouts.
For more information, you may write to: [email protected]






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