This past Saturday, AFC Cleveland held open tryouts at Force Sports Northfield in Warrensville Heights, with over 50 participants battling for a spot in the Royals’ squad. The number of participants was higher than in previous years, which was a welcome surprise for the AFC Cleveland staff.
“The response to the tryouts was fantastic. I was excited to see the amount of players who showed interest in the club,” said assistant coach Brock Kertoy.
While the limited number of available spots means that the coaches will have a harder time deciding on who makes the cut, the number of those in attendance means that the coaches were exposed to a wider array of players.
“I think there was a lot of good talent,” said head coach Carter Poe. “We had a lot of good candidates.”
“We identified some players that we thought would be a good fit for our spine,” added Kertoy.
AFC Cleveland, a member of the National Premier Soccer League, is looking to add more players to its roster, and its staff seemed happy with the number of participants in attendance.
“Every year we grow a little bit more,” said AFC Cleveland CEO/President Terry Lawriw.
To Kertoy, it is no surprise that the Cleveland team’s fan base is growing steadily, claiming that the Royals bring quality soccer to the region.
“In Northeast Ohio they want to see quality soccer and I think we were able to do that [last season].”
The AFC Cleveland staff is hoping that the high number of participants at the tryouts translates into higher attendance at games, something that Poe believes can happen.
“There are a lot of soccer fans out there; it’s just getting the word out,” added head coach Carter Poe.