Richmond United teams up with leading soccer academy

The recently re-branded Richmond United Soccer Club (RUSC) is teaming up with one of the city’s leading soccer academies.

RUSC – which, after 46 years, changed its name in June from the Richmond Girls Soccer Association – has partnered with the Richmond-based Martin Bittengl School of Soccer.

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A statement released by RUSC on Wednesday said that Bittengl and his staff will coach the club’s new adult program, which has two teams in the Richmond Adult Soccer League, and also its boys program, which will start in the spring.

RUSC was previously a girls-only youth soccer operation, until it revamped before the summer to include children of all genders and identities.

“Our club’s goal is to create an all-inclusive environment that not only provides a variety of programming options for all players, but with direct on-field coaching by some of the best coaches in B.C.” RUSC’s director of operations, Mandhir Punia, told the Richmond News.

“Martin, by the end of this year, will possess the highest coaching certification that a coach can have.

“Martin and his team provides our players with the opportunity to train with some of the best coaches available…”

Bittengl, added Punia, is currently a UEFA A Licence coach and is studying for his UEFA Pro Licence, the highest certification available in the sport.

The News reported in February how the previously all-boys youth soccer program at Richmond FC was launching its girls’ program this year with former Team Canada coach Even Pellerud in a leadership position.

The recent changes at both RUSC and Richmond FC means the city now has, for the first time, two youth soccer clubs offering both male and female programs.

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