Internationals expand coaching staff
Former NASL MVP Segota becomes PDL assistant
CLEVELAND, OH -- Branko Segota, who enjoyed an 18-year professional soccer career and was the NASL Player of the Year in 1984, has joined the Cleveland Internationals‘ coaching staff, serving as an assistant to George Nanchoff for the Premier Development League (PDL) men‘s team.
The Cleveland Internationals open their 2004 PDL season Friday, May 14, at Byers Field in Parma against Columbus. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. The Internationals’ W-league women's entry begins play Friday, May 21, in Cincinnati.
Segota (suh-GOAT-uh) has twice guided Cleveland Croatia to the Erie League title and coached for six years in the Internationals’ premier youth program. A high-scoring forward during his professional career, he played for Ft. Lauderdale, Rochester, N.Y., and Golden Bay (now the San Jose Earthquakes) outdoors, and New York, San Diego, Baltimore and Las Vegas indoors. Moreover, Segota played against both George and Louie Nanchoff during his years on the Canadian National Team and was a member of Canada’s World Cup team in 1986.
Head coach of the PDL men’s team, George Nanchoff is a name synonymous with championship soccer in the Cleveland-Akron area. Nanchoff is one of the principal owners of the Cleveland Internationals premier youth program and directed the club’s 16-year old boys team to a Gothia Cup championship in 2001 in Sweden. A two-time first-team All-America soccer standout for the University of Akron, Nanchoff was the NASL’s Rookie of the Year in 1977 as a member of the Fort Lauderdale Strikers and participated on U.S. Olympic and World Cup teams during the early 1980s. Upon his retirement as a pro player, he along with fellow Cleveland Internationals owners Zdravko Popovic and his brother, Louie, introduced a boys division to Internationals Soccer Club in 1987. Nanchoff is Director of Soccer Operations at MetroPlex Sports & Events Center in Warrensville Heights and has coached hundreds of athletes to regional, national and international championships.
Head coach of the W-League women’s team, Popovic is a USSF A Licensed Coach, who has worked with youth to elite U.S. level players. Currently Director of Soccer Operations at Pinnacle Sports Complex in Medina County and one of the owners of the Cleveland Internationals, Popovic‘s resume includes being: USASA National Women’s Coach (1998-present), USASA Region II Women’s Select Coach, U.S. Olympic Sports Festival Coach (1997 gold medal), U.S. Soccer Festival Coach (1992, 1996 silver medal) and 1997 all-star coach leading his team to a victory over the U.S. National Team, 1-0.
As Director of the Internationals' Super Y-League (youth) effort and an owner of the Internationals, Louie Nanchoff has played top-level soccer both internationally and professionally, as well as coaching numerous youth teams to national and international prominence. His playing career included: high school and collegiate All-America honors, being name to the U.S. Olympic Team, and U.S. World Cup Team, and a 10-year career in the professional ranks. He is currently the Boys Director for the International Soccer Club (holding a USSF license C) and a key person in the administration of the Internationals.