In case you haven’t had a chance to keep up, here’s a rewind of some of the news and notes that came from the North American Soccer League this week.
On Thursday afternoon, the NASL announced that the winners of seven different award categories will be announced during the week that leads up to Soccer Bowl on Saturday, Nov. 9 in Atlanta. All of the award recipients will be honored the day before the big game during the NASL Awards Celebration event.
The order of the NASL Awards to be handed out is as follows:
Mon., Nov. 4: NASL Golden Boot (The top goal scorer over both the spring and fall seasons)
Tues., Nov. 5: NASL Golden Glove (The goalkeeper with the best goals against average based on having played a minimum of 10 NASL games)
Wed., Nov. 6: NASL Fair Play Award (The team that accumulates the lowest points total based on a red and yellow cards points system)
Thurs., Nov. 7: NASL Best XI (NASL coaches will select a team of 11 players)
Fri., Nov. 8:
NASL Goal of the Season (Fans vote from a selection of nominated goals available at www.NASLSoccerBowl.com and NASL.com)
NASL Golden Ball (League’s player of the season)
NASL Coach of the Year (League's top coach)
On Tuesday, the NASL announced that its expansion Jacksonville franchise has its first team president.
Sunshine Soccer Group CEO and team owner Mark Frisch tabbed Steve Livingstone to the post for the team that will begin play in the spring of 2015. Livingstone brings 17 years of leadership experience in the National Football League, the last eight of which he spent leading teams in the areas of business development, sales and marketing for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
"We're thrilled to have Steve join us as our new team's first soccer president," said Frisch in a statement provided by the league. "He has extensive knowledge and experience in starting up and bringing great success to professional sports teams and comes to us with a rich background including more than 20 years in professional soccer in the UK and football with the NFL. I know Steve is the right man to lead our new franchise and grow our new fan base here in Jacksonville and beyond."
Livingston expressed his excitement about the challenge ahead.
"I consider it a huge honor and opportunity of a lifetime to be involved at the inception of the new Jacksonville NASL franchise," said Livingstone. "You could say I've graduated from promoting American football to Europeans to promoting European football to Americans.”
On Monday, the NASL named FC Edmonton forward Daryl Fordyce as the league’s player of the week. Fordyce scored both of his team’s goals in a 2-1 victory over the Carolina RailHawks.
"It is an honor to receive this from the league but at the end of the day, it's a team out there and we all played hard to earn three points," said Fordyce, who currently leads FC Edmonton with six goals.
With just four weeks to play in the NASL fall season, it’s the New York Cosmos in the driver’s seat for the chance to play the Atlanta Silverbacks in Soccer Bowl. The Cosmos have opened up a seven-point cushion in the standings and appear headed to the championship game in their first season back in the NASL after a three-decade hiatus.
Follow me on twitter @aksports.