The OSC Interview: Seattle Reign FC Head Coach Vlatko Andonovski
OurSports Central contributor Fran Stuchbury interviewed Seattle Reign FC head coach Vlatko Andonovski following his team's 1-0 National Women's Soccer League loss to the North Carolina Courage at WakeMed Soccer Park. Andonovski is in his first season as head with Seattle Reign FC. He was previously the head coach at FC Kansas City from 2013 until 2017 and led them to back-to-back NWSL titles in 2014 and 2015. He also served as head coach of indoor soccer's Kansas City Comets from 2013 till 2016, where he won a Major Indoor Soccer League championship during the 2013-14 season.
Andonovski enjoyed a long indoor soccer career as a player staring in the year 2000. He spent most of his career as a player for the Kansas City Comets from 2001 till 2005. On February 8, 2015 he came out of retirement to play one more game for the Comets.
Fran Stuchbury: What were thoughts on the game today?
Vlatko Andonovski: It was a good battle; two good teams playing against each other. We showed flashes of good things. The second half we gave the Courage more opportunities, and when that happened we got punished. Congratulations to them for the win. I am looking forward to the next time we play them at home in Seattle on June 23rd. It will be a good matchup.
FS: When you were the head coach at Kansas City FC the team won back-to-back championships in 2014 and 2015.
VA: Obviously it's a good accomplishment. To win one championship is an accomplishment, to win back to back is harder, but I have to give a lot of credit to the players that were on the team. Incredible players, incredible team, they made it happen.
FS: What interested you in being head coach of the Seattle Reign FC?
VA: I spoke to their organization and had a conversation with them. The owner Bill Predmore was open-minded. After talking to him for a few minutes, this was the owner I wanted to work with. This is an organization I wanted to be part of. I am looking forward to the challenge.
FS: How was your experience playing indoor soccer for many seasons?
VA: I loved the indoor game, the dynamic that it's fast paced. Being part of something like that was incredible. I am just trying to get some of those elements of the game into the outdoor game.
FS: How was winning your first championship as a head coach with the Kansas City Comets during the 2013-14 season?
VA: It was great to be part of the championship organization. It wasn't easy, but it was very fulfilling.
FS: How was coming out of retirement in 2015 for one game for the Kansas City Comets after being retired as a player for 10 years?
VA: It was fun, I really had fun. It was a game, more like a promotion for the Comets fans, and I thought they would enjoy it.
FS: What are the similarities and differences in coaching indoor soccer and outdoor soccer?
VA: First and foremost, it is soccer. Whether it's indoor or outdoor, soccer is soccer. Obviously, there are a lot of differences. Like I said, indoor is a little more dynamic and the field is smaller. While outdoor soccer is a bigger field and that makes it different.
FS: Was it challenging when you had to coach indoor soccer then women's soccer year round when you coached the Kansas City Comets and Kansas City FC?
VA: It is a challenge all the time. It was challenging; it was a little overwhelming, but it was fun. It was fun to be part of two great organizations, two great teams.
FS: You are involved with so many youth soccer leagues for kids in Kansas City. Do you enjoy doing that?
VA: Yes, absolutely. Kansas City is a great soccer market. Being part of the community, I want to help soccer grow as much as possible. It's very exciting.
FS: Would you like the NWSL to return to Kansas City in the near future if the right ownership group comes in place?
VA: I hope, I think Kansas City is a great market. Hopefully with the right ownership group, it could succeed.
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