These young athletes demonstrate unwavering dedication to their sport.
In the heart of Ventura County, an unassuming youth soccer team is quietly making waves on the national stage. These young athletes, representing the club team TFA (Total Futbol Academy), are between the ages of 9 and 10 years old, yet they have already demonstrated exceptional skill, unwavering dedication, and a passion for the sport that rivals their more seasoned counterparts.
At the helm of this remarkable team is head coach Jose (Pepe) Ibarra, a local business owner and soccer enthusiast who has been guiding the team since 2022. With his infectious enthusiasm and deep knowledge of the game, Coach Ibarra has instilled in his players a winning mentality, a deep appreciation for sportsmanship, and a love for the beautiful game.
Alongside him is Assistant Coach Arturo Zaragoza, a soccer expert and Director of Financial Equity Programs at Ventura County Credit Union. Coach Zaragoza brings his vast soccer experience and commitment to equitable opportunities to the team, ensuring that every player, regardless of background, has the chance to excel.
Both coaches volunteer their time and effort, driven by a shared passion for soccer and a belief in the power of sports to transform lives. Their dedication has allowed the team to compete at the highest level without compromising their principles of fairness and accessibility.
Coach Ibarra’s philosophy revolves around treating his players as soccer players, not children. He challenges them with advanced concepts, believing that their young minds are capable of absorbing and applying complex strategies. This approach has proven highly effective, leading to impressive results on the field.
The TFA team competes as a flight 1 team in southern California, consistently securing victories in major tournaments across Nevada, California, and most recently, a second-place finish in Arizona. They strategically select only the top tournaments in different states, competing against the best teams in their age group. This commitment to facing the toughest competition has undoubtedly fueled their growth and success.
These young athletes demonstrate unwavering dedication to their sport, committing to rigorous training schedules of 3-4 times a week, coupled with weekend tournaments that often require extensive travel. They embrace the challenges and sacrifices, driven by a shared passion for soccer and a desire to compete at the highest level. Their hard work and determination are evident in their impressive performances on the field.
Who are these athletes??? Adrian Torres, Angel Garcia, Alexander Zaragoza, Carlos Esquivel, Enrique Cristales, Giovanny Ruiz, Isaac Meza, Maximiliano Ibarra, Pedro Rodriguez, and Gael Thiago Munguia.
The TFA team of Ventura County serves as an inspiration to young athletes everywhere, demonstrating that with hard work, dedication, and the guidance of passionate coaches, anything is possible. Their success on the field is a testament to their talent, determination, and the unwavering support of their coaches and families. The TFA team’s story is a reminder that even in the face of adversity, with hard work, dedication, and the support of a community, anything is possible. They serve as an inspiration to young athletes everywhere, demonstrating that with passion, perseverance, and the guidance of committed coaches, dreams can become a reality.