Join Now  | 
Home About Contact Us Privacy & Security Advertise
Soccer America Daily Soccer World Daily Special Edition Around The Net Soccer Business Insider College Soccer Reporter Youth Soccer Reporter Soccer on TV Soccer America Classifieds Game Report
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalk Soccer America Confidential Youth Soccer Insider World Cup Watch
RSS Feeds Archives Manage Subscriptions Subscribe
Order Current Issue Subscribe Manage My Subscription Renew My Subscription Gift Subscription
My Account Join Now
Tournament Calendar Camps & Academies Soccer Glossary Classifieds
Andre Blake takes goalkeeping 'gift' to Philly
by Mike Woitalla, January 16th, 2014 4:23PM
Subscribe to Soccer America Daily

MOST READ
TAGS:  college men, mls, philadelphia union

MOST COMMENTED

[2014 MLS SUPERDRAFT] It was a bittersweet day for UConn coach Ray Reid when he saw his Husky Andre Blake become the first goalkeeper to be picked No. 1 in an MLS draft.

“For him, it’s the right time [to go pro]," said Reid, for whom the 23-year-old Jamaican played three seasons before opting to go pro after his junior year. “He’s done a great job. I was looking forward to winning a championship with him, but he’s done everything else we wanted him to do.”

The Huskies reached the NCAA quarterfinals in each of Blake’s three seasons. More than half of his 68 games were shutouts and last season -- over the span of four games -- UConn played in three shootouts and Blake stopped seven penalty kicks, including two to knock off No. 1 seed UCLA on the road.

Blake is already in line to succeed Donovan Ricketts in the Jamaican national team's goal. Philadelphia traded for the No. 1 pick with D.C. United to land Blake, who will aim to wrest the starting spot away from Zac MacMath.

Reid, for one, believes Blake will excel at the next level.

“We knew when he arrived as a freshman he was special,” said Reid. “He’s fantastic. A great kid. Obviously a great goalkeeper. He worked hard everyday. Great in the air. Great with his feet. He can distribute the ball. A great leader. He really deserves this. I’m very happy for him.”

Blake played keeper and forward until at age 17 he decided to focus solely on goalkeeping. Playing in the field helped him become such a good distributor of the ball.

“He’s better with his feet than some of our field players,” said Reid.

Blake started falling in love with goalkeeping as a young boy when his father would take Andre and his five brothers to a school field in May Pen -- a southern Jamaican town of 60,000 -- for kickarounds.

“My dad and my brothers would always take me to the field and I found myself standing in the goal,” said Andre. “Catching the ball was something I liked. It came a little bit easy for me so I thought maybe it was something I was blessed with, a gift.”


No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer America Daily
What They're Saying: Caleb Porter    
"We have to have more guys that are finding ways to f***ing win games. Excuse my ...
MLS: Timbers' Cascadia draw latest in worrying pattern    
The Portland Timbers were coming off two tough losses on the road in the last week ...
By the Numbers: Galaxy's record home vs. away form    
Since 2000, only 10 MLS teams have finished the season with a worse record at home ...
Video Pick: Big oops by Galaxy goalie    
Roger Espinoza's 32-yard shot was heading straight into L.A. Galaxy goalkeeper Clement Diop's chest. But Diop ...
MLS: Quakes replace Kinnear with Leitch as head coach    
Less than 24 hours after beating Real Salt Lake, 2-1, to move into fifth place in ...
USMNT: Arena names roster for Gold Cup    
Bruce Arena named his 23-player roster for the Gold Cup. It includes four uncapped players: Kelyn ...
What They're Saying: Haris Medunjanin    
"I think you need to be honest, and I didn't feel a kick. It was just ...
MLS Weekend: Fire extends win streak to seven games    
The Chicago Fire extending its home winning streak to seven games - the second-longest streak in ...
TV: Cincy-Chicago Open Cup match to be shown on ESPN2     
In just its second season in the USL, FC Cincinnati is racking up milestones in terms ...
MLS Today: Hunt for points intensifies    
Big rivalry matches will be played each day over the weekend -- Houston-FC Dallas, NYCFC-Red Bulls ...
>> Soccer America Daily Archives