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Success builds upon success. There are currently more former Celtic players in the MLS than all of the other local clubs combined. Of course, only a few players, Celtic or otherwise, are able to play professional soccer. These are the specially blessed players with an athletic “gene pool” that sets them apart. Examples like Pele who played for Brazil at age 16 or Wayne Rooney who played for England at age 16 are few and far between. Current professional player Landon Donovan’s pre-teenage coach knew only two things about soccer. One use a round ball and two wear shin guards. MLS is sprinkled with several players who’ve perfected and honed their skills of stock-in-trade on the training grounds of Celtic Park. Former Celtic players Michael Randolph and Maurice Edu competed on the same Celtic team for many years and were coached by a man “straight out of AYSO.” Even with these modest beginnings, Randolph (Currently with Miami FC formerly with LA Galaxy) and Edu (currently with the Glasgow Rangers, formerly with FC Toronto #1 MLS pick from the University of Maryland and 2007 rookie of the year) played head-to-head at the Home Depot facility. These former Celtic players have returned on numerous occasions to sign autographs at the Celtic Cup soccer tournaments. They each possess a wonderful sense of appreciation and fond memories of wins, losses, and draws in their youthful soccer experience.
One of the reasons for continued Celtic success is the emphasis placed on soccer facilities. The Celtic organization provides three lighted training grounds for its teams. Also, 50 x 80 yard space for teams to train and allow the Celtic to maintain its local home field during the season. These facilities are provided at no cost to a parent or player.
Celtic has been able to maintain its tradition of excellence while also keeping in mind the costs, usually to parents, for youth soccer. Additionally, the administration of the Celtic organization provides for the epitome of “grass roots” democracy. All Celtic meetings, including elections, are conducted and recorded via Robert’s Rules of Order. The cost, of youth soccer remain paramount with importance to the Celtic organization. $1,000.00 is the total team entry fee. The cost of approximately $30.00 per month, per player, is a fee so reasonable that it shocks those who compare the cost of Celtic to other soccer clubs.
Celtic teams participate in the Celtic Cup for a nominal fee and this includes multiple weekends of competition.
Celtic emphasis on cost savings is prevalent throughout the organization. During the year 2007, the most that any director of the Celtic organization received from Celtic Cup was less than $5,000. This will be true for 2008. Despite any rumors to the contrary, 66% of the Celtic Cup fees are reinvested in the club each year. Approximately 40 Celtic teenagers run Celtic Cup. These teenagers are not only well fed, they are compensated financially for their work above the minimum wage. Through experience and the guidance of elders, these teenagers learn how to organize and run complex soccer tournaments.
Part of the Celtic philosophy is that ninety percent of what a player is or will ever become is set in stone by age twelve. The remaining ten percent is set in stone by age sixteen. The Celtic organization, its coaches, facilities, and management can make all the difference to a player who want to achieve their maximum soccer ability. Remember, soccer is a team sport. The development of the team can be very different from the personal development of each player. As an example, the only Celtic team (1989/1990) to win back to back regional championships, a USA National Championship, World final (U15 versus Turkey S-O) of Copa Coca Cola and 16-tournaments consecutively, had zero ODP players and zero Academy stars. This “team” consisted of the same very fit and very well trained, 13-players for years and included two happy subs.
Celtic is a non-profit organization, registered with the United States Federal Government and the State of California. This corporation is organized expressly for charitable purposes within the meaning of para.501 © (3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954. Contributions are deductable under para.170 ©
First Celtic Team! Coach Matt McDonagh - Todd McDonagh, Steve Taylor, Mike Tello, Sean McGonegle