Harry Triana founded SABA (Soccer At Its Best Academy) in 1999. The objective was to provide an organization that would provide an Academy structure with progressive age groups that maintained expectations, standards, and a consistent philosophy, not evident in Brooklyn at that time.
In the organization’s formative years, SABA trained teams at clubs in different communities. As the staff tried to balance varying club philosophies with SABA’s methods, many obstacles were encountered that impeded the ability to carry out individual, team, and club objectives.
Although as a training Academy, SABA has shown the ability to build successful programs at other clubs, in 2013 Harry Triana restructured the organization to establish independence and create a distinct brand. Committed to values that won’t compromise the quality of the club, SABA NYC maintains a true soccer culture that keeps player needs at the forefront and not those of adults with individual agendas.
SABA NYC now sustains its own resources to register players, acquire home fields, enter leagues and tournaments, and streamline uniform designs and delivery. In just a short time, the club has become a recognizable brand, continuing to maintain a positive reputation throughout Brooklyn and the NYC Metropolitan area.
CURRENT CLUB STRUCTURE
- Club Director, Assistant Director, and Technical Director who’ve attained the highest licenses and continue to pursue courses and seminars domestically and internationally each year.
- A diverse staff dedicated to the community and immersed in SABA’s philosophy.
- Full-time strength and conditioning specialist focusing on functional activities that are sport specific.
- Administration and daily operations staff members.
- Parent Volunteers who provide administrative support for teams.
- Omission of parent boards to avoid individual agendas.
- 300 players organized in progressive age groups and levels.
- Early introduction to club through Kinder Kicks program.
- Year-round camps and clinics.
- International Celtic FC Academy summer camp hosted in Brooklyn.
- Celtic FC Academy’s first International Partner in NYC.
- 26 Competitive teams ages 7-15.
- Competitions in various local, regional, and national leagues.
- Invitations to top tournaments in the US and abroad.
- Most accomplished girls program in Brooklyn with 150+ girls.
- Equally successful boys and girls teams competing in local, regional, and national competitions.
- Home fields in Brooklyn and Queens.
- Indoor locations for 26 teams.
- Appropriate leagues that are monitored and changed to fulfill objectives. Supporting a league, even when it does not fulfill team needs, prevents the club from being progressive.
- Procedures and bylaws enforced by Club Directors and Staff.
UNIQUE CLUB LEADERSHIP
It’s common for club directors to coach the oldest or most talented teams within a club. Some directors only administrate and oversee operations without coaching any of the club’s teams and may not be at the fields on a daily basis.
SABA takes on a different approach. The Founder, Assistant Director, and Technical Director, all coach teams of various ages and levels throughout the year. Each of the club’s directors has also grown with their teams over years, at times beginning with them at U7 and U8. Therefore, club leadership is consistently on the field throughout the week.
A daily connection to the program helps provide immediate feedback and suggest improvements. Off the field, SABA’s directors meet several times per week to discuss the program’s direction, as well as team and staff assessments. This type of leadership provides the personal commitment and disciplined execution that helps achieve expected results.