The Philadelphia Independence announced the selection of Paul Riley as their first head coach in team history today.
Riley, who is originally from Liverpool, England, has had a long and illustrious career coaching men’s and women’s youth, college, and minor league soccer, including two National Championships (2006 and 2009) with the WPSL Long Island Fury.
His distinguished coaching career includes numerous honors and awards as both a player and a coach. He has earned honors such as A-League National Coach of the Year, New York Regional Coach of the Year, Umbro A-League All-Star Coach Selection, and Five-Time New York Collegiate Athletic Conference Coach of the Year.
As head coach of the CW Post Pioneers (Long Island University) from 1991-1997, he accumulated a record of 98-48-11. In addition, under Paul’s direction, his Albertson Soccer Club youth teams have won numerous New York State Championships and are considered some of the most dominant in the country.
As a player at Adelphi University, Paul was MVP in three of his four years there, and still holds school records for all-time leading points and assists. He continued his playing career after college with the Albany Capitals, New Jersey Eagles, and Long Island Rough Riders, where he was part of the National Championship teams in 1994 and 1995.
When he is not coaching, Paul runs the Paul Riley Soccer School, which hosts regular training camps and skill sessions for players of all ages.
Says Philadelphia’s General Manager Terry Foley, “Paul Riley is the perfect ingredient for this franchise. He is a former standout player, distinguished youth club coach and executive, and two-time WPSL National Champion. Paul has coached players on the U.S. National Team and in the Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) league over the course of his career and is well-respected for his knowledge of the game and his ability to find and use talent.
"I am impressed with Paul’s positive rapport with his players and ability to bring diverse talents and skills together for successful results on the field. He is a tremendous asset to this team, its incoming players, and this city.”
The new head coach Riley added, “I am thrilled to be selected to coach this team. I have gotten to know the organization over the past few weeks by helping evaluate talent at the European Championships in Finland and am very impressed with the front office and the goals and objectives it has for 2010 and beyond.
"I am also very pleased to be working with Assistant Coaches Staci Wilson and Paul Royal in preparation for our season’s start next April. There are lots and lots of world-class players available out there, and we are going to do our absolute best to bring top talent to Philadelphia through the league’s draft process and deliver a product our fans and communities are proud to watch and support."
“We are very pleased to have Paul Riley join the ranks of our distinguished WPS coaches” says WPS Commissioner Tonya Antonucci. “Paul will complement the terrific organization that is being built in Philadelphia for the Independence fans and we congratulate him on this selection.”
The announcement comes a week before the Philadelphia Independence begins selecting players for its 2010 roster. Player analysis is in full swing in preparation for the Sept. 15 WPS Expansion Draft, in which Philadelphia may select up to nine players from existing WPS team rosters.
This is followed one week later on Sept. 22 by the WPS International Draft, where the Independence has first overall selection and will select a total of five star international players.
Then, at the end of September, the free agency trade period begins.
Independence 2010 Season Tickets on Sale Now
The 2010 season ticket launch along with the September player drafts provide very exciting times for the Philadelphia Independence and we hope you stay connected to all the news by signing up for our eNewsletter, the Independence Insider, at www.wpsphillyindependence.com.
About Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS)
The mission of Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) is to be the premier women’s soccer league in the world and the global standard by which women’s professional sports are measured.
Play kicked off on March 29, 2009, with WPS teams based in the Bay Area, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, New Jersey/New York, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. The league’s eighth franchise, Philadelphia, will begin play next season with Atlanta joining as the ninth team in 2010.
For more information, visit www.womensprosoccer.com.