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Eastern New York Continues Its Video Series––Week 6––Longtime Pro Carlos Mendes Gives Advice to Soccer Families

By Randy Vogt, Director of Public Relations, Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association
June 10, 2016-The Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) continues its unprecedented video series in educating Soccer Moms and Dads with an interview with Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) product Carlos Mendes, the captain of the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League (NASL). Carlos grew up playing with the LIJSL clubs in Albertson, New Hyde Park and Dix Hills as well as Eastern New York’s Olympic Development Program (ODP). At Wheatley High School, he was awarded the 1997 Jim Steen Award as Nassau County’s best player. He then went on to play for Old Dominion University. Carlos’ professional career started with the Long Island Rough Riders of the USL Pro Soccer League in 2002, then he moved up a division to play for the Rochester Rhinos. The Mineola resident played eight seasons in Major League Soccer (MLS) with the New York Red Bulls and Columbus Crew, then became the first player to sign with the rebooted Cosmos in 2012.

The video is linked here:


“The key is having a good support system. My parents always supported me and obviously it’s a big commitment,“ Carlos explained. “ODP at that time was so important to me, playing with the best players in the area and trying out for the National Team. That’s a big part of it, having the right people around you, the right coaches and the right support system.“

Advice from the Cosmos captain on how to advance as a player include “if you don’t love the game, it’s very hard to get to the next level,“ “stay humble and not be arrogant,“ plus “enjoy the game, work hard and have fun.“

Eastern New York is providing this video series, as a service to its 11 member leagues throughout New York State and its over 100,000 players, in response to the increased pressure on parents and players regarding college scholarships.

With over 100,000 youth soccer players––both boys and girls––and more than 25,000 volunteers, the non-profit Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) stretches from Montauk Point, Long Island to the Canadian border. Members are affiliated with 11 leagues throughout the association, which covers the entire state of New York east of Route 81. ENYYSA exists to promote and enhance the game of soccer for children and teenagers between the ages of 5 and 19 years old, and to encourage the healthy development of youth players, coaches, referees and administrators. All levels of soccer are offered––from intramural, travel team and premier players as well as Children With Special Needs. No child who wants to play soccer is turned away. ENYYSA is a proud member of the United States Soccer Federation and United States Youth Soccer Association. For more information, please log on to, which receives nearly 300,000 hits annually from the growing soccer community.