Danny Dichio is an ex professional footballer/soccer player who has played in the English Premier League, Italian Seria A, and the MLS. He has recently took a job on the Fox Soccer Channel as a news Analyst. His main role now is a coach for the Toronto FC Academy, who he played for the MLS. Here is a link to Danny’s Website: http://www.Dichio24.com


1/ what is your role at Toronto FC?

I am Head Coach of the U19 TFC Academy team

2/ what is your philosophy as a coach?

My philosophy is to play an attacking style of football with lots of interchanging from the players. I like to play out of 4-3-3 system, so we have to teach players how to improve technically first, before we can even start talking tactically. In this system, if you do not have players that are comfortable on the ball, then you are going to be defending a lot or getting scored on a lot, as your team is so stretched to try & create space to play.

3/ Do you think the level of players in the US and Canada is improving?

Dramatically so! In the US, you can see at a senior level how many players are playing abroad(Europe especially), that this has increased the standard. This due to the money the US soccer federation invested with Nike into their Youth programs a few years back.
Here in Toronto, we have a different scenario bubbling up. We have a very eclectic array of nationalities living here now & they are from all prominent football countries. England, Italy, Portugal, brazil, Jamaica, Africa, Caribbean, these are just a few of the places where these kids are from or their parents have originated, so that meaning that football is in their culture already, which is a massive plus!

4/ What is the main difference between Canadian/US soccer than English football? Players and Coaches?

I think the main difference is the Media & how much it is in everyone’s face in England constantly. Its our #1 sport in the UK compared to here in North America where we have 4 or 5 other sports to compete with. The coaching is getting a lot better here too. The major problem here in Canada is the Facilities, fields(lack of), + money being put back into the development of coaches & players.

5/ The USSF has implemented a new curriculum. Has Canadian soccer done a similar thing.

No. Canada is miles behind the USSSF in those kind of programs. They have people here who want to implement them, but the people who make the decisions are not the right people who want to move football on in this country.

6/ Do you think Academy soccer in Canada/US is at a similar level to European academies?

Its probably getting there, but I would not say its level yet. The Academies at the Pro clubs in England is very serious(even here at TFC) & you have to consistently perform to want to be a part of it. Other Academies I see in North America where the kids are paying are a little bit different as I feel the Parents still have too much of a say in what the kid is doing.

7/ Do you ever get back to watch QPR now they are back in the Premier League.

I am going back at Christmas to spend some time at Chelsea, Arsenal & QPR to watch training session etc. So  I am sure I will catch a game at Loftus Road then.









Q&A with Kelly Smith – Arsenal Ladies, England & Team GB Footballer.

Q&A with KELLY SMITH – Arsenal Ladies, England, and Team GB Footballer

Kelly, is currently in her third spell with FA WSL club Arsenal Ladies. As a teenager she played in the US college system, Kelly broke records with Seton Hall University then played professionally with Women’s United Soccer Association (WUSA) franchise Philadelphia Charge. After returning to Arsenal for a spell which included a 2007 UEFA Women’s Cup win, Kelly went back to the US with another professional contract, with Boston Breakers in the Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS).

She has accumulated over 100 caps for the England women’s national football team since making her debut in 1995. She is England’s record goal scorer with 45 goals. She played for Team Great Britain at the 2012 London Olympics.

Kelly has recently brought out a book called: Footballer, My story.

Footballer: My Story is the inspirational tale of a woman with a drive to succeed despite all the obstacles thrown in her way. It is the unique inside story of a star in a sport enjoyed by millions yet often not granted the recognition it deserves. And as she nears the end of a glittering playing career, it is the story of how Kelly Smith became what she always wanted to be. A professional footballer, in a professional league.

Here is a link to buy Kelly’s book on Amazon.

Kelly Smith’s Book: Footballer, My Story

Hi Jamie,
Here’s the answers to your questions…

1/ Growing up who was your role model as a player? And why?

Ryan Giggs we played in the same position, he was left footed and so was I. I loved the way he ran with the ball and took defenders on. He was fast and skilful and I loved watching him play. I tried to model my game on him growing up.

2/ As a top player what advise do you have for younger players?

You can have all the talent in the world but if you don’t work hard you will not succeed.
Listen to your coaches and watch football at the highest level see what players do that play in your position. It is a great tool for your own development.

3/ What is the difference between the US women’s game to the English game?

The speed of play is quicker in the USA. I believe due to the teams training together on a more regular basis.

4/ Do you think the WSL has been a success?

Yes so far, the league is still young and developing. The games are alot more competitive which makes it more enjoyable to play in. Each year we want to raise the profile and see growth within the league.

5/ What can team GB learn from the Olympics?

It was an amazing experience playing in the biggest sporting event in the world but it was a shame we couldn’t get to a medal match as we fell short to canada. We need to learn to win when the pressure is on even if it is ugly.

 6/ How far away are England from winning the world cup?

Well first off we have to qualify for the next one in Canada. We always set our stall out every campaign to qualify. England as a nation should be qualifying for major tournaments. There are so many top teams in Europe – Germany, Sweden and France to name a few and that is very hard in itself. The last world cup we got to the quarters and lost to France on penalties. You also have to have a little luck along the way, depth in your squad and a strong team bond to go all the way.

 Here is a video of Kelly Smith and Alex Scott talking about the FA WSL