Boys Soccer: 10 questions for next season

In the spirit of the 2012 Euro Cup, it’s time for some way too early boys East Bay soccer chatter.
Here are 10 questions heading into next year.

1. Five-peat?

Can De La Salle win five straight titles? They have quite a bit coming back, and will almost undoubtedly open the season as the No. 1 ranked team.

2. Can Richmond finally get an NCS title?

The Oilers have some pieces to replace, including 26 goals from Gerardo Mendoza and the very underrated Israel Ayala in the midfield. But, they have plenty coming back and as long as Erik Montes is on the pitch, the Oilers will be a threat.

3. Is this YV’s year?

YV was the best Division II team for much of the season last year, but faded just a bit at the end with injuries and grades. The Warriors have most of their key players returning, including Edgar Damian and Jonathan Ayala. They should be considered the favorite.

4. Is Pittsburg good enough to compete for a title?

Yes. The Pirates return almost everyone. They have to replace top scorer Jaime Lopez, but expect to see the type of team that pushed DLS to the brink in the playoffs.

5. Does Acalanes bounce back from the early playoff exit?

Without a doubt. The last thing teams needed was for the Dons to be even more motivated. I’d actually be shocked to not see them in the NCS final next year.

6. How good will Hayward be?

Short answer: very good. With many returning players, including key scorers and contributors, and with a bad taste in their mouth, they’ll be motivated.

7. What of our Division II finalists?

Both teams graduated quite a bit, so it will be interesting to see how both come back. Both sides still have plenty of talent, and good coaches.

8. Who is this year’s Tennyson?

What a great run Tennyson went on last year. A special run for that school. My sleeper teams are Alameda, St. Mary’s, Miramonte, Mount Diablo, Foothill, and of course, Tennyson.

9. Who’s next in the EBAL?

I think Cal and Monte Vista will be battling to be the team that challenges DLS. And of course, SRV will be very good.

10. My way too early finals predictions?

DLS v. Richmond
YV v. Acalanes

Matt Smith

  • Juan Pito

    SRV and Cal will not be nearly as good as this year in EBAL. I believe De La Salle will be a cut above everybody once again with serious contenders in Richmond an Pittsburg.

  • Offside! Ref…Come On!

    Hey Matt, Whatever happened to the game time schedule change fiasco in EBAL? Is it a done deal?

    On a side note, who is this years Euro Cup Champ?
    I watched Germany today. They are my first choice. Can Spain do it? Why not Russia as a sleeper?

  • Matt Smith

    EBAL time change is a done deal.

    Germany is my top pick, but I’m sold on some of these Eastern European teams such as Russia, Croatia or the Czech Republic being a thorn in a team’s side if they get through. I love Nikica Jelavic.
    If it won’t be Germany, it will probably be Spain.

  • Lonewolf

    @Matt…Double check on time deal…Athletic Directors got an ear full. Supposedly they have recanted and saw error of ways regarding time change. Last I heard its back to 6pm for Varsity games. I think your blog may have helped in getting the word out on a most illogical adventure.

  • Shinguard

    @Matt…regarding EBAL..I heard the same thing, I think AD’s had meeting last week and came to the conclusion that times need to stay as is with a 6pm Varsity start. I think parents and players voiced a strong protest and somebody listened.

    Spartan’s will stay on top with MV giving the strongest challenge along with San Ramon. Sparty will be on the younger side but depth of bench is a good +. Las Lomas should show noticeable improvement and could ruin a teams day.
    Germany is looking good…Croatia seems fit and tough. Spain the footy work is outstanding.

  • Shinguard

    Diablo FC 95 U16 team is WCDA Champions. They won the Tournament in Redmond WA back on June 3rd. Some very familiar faces from HS soccer are on that team.

  • Matt Smith

    Correct. EBAL varsity game times are back to 6:00. I have verified it.

  • Shinguard

    @Matt…go to BevMo…and pick out your Euro Cup selection of brews..they have one for almost every country playing.

    Best soccer blog in they Bay Area…I think a fire storm hit when that business about change of game time in EBAL.
    The Davis College Showcase Soccer Tournament is July 19-22 about 150 college coaches will be at this tournament along with almost every club team from NorCal This is a full blown tournament format.

  • Matt, how do we contact you directly. I have a story that might change your top ten to top 11

  • Offside! Ref…Come On!

    Darn Russians! I thought that they would get to quarters…
    Greece? Oh my…
    Cech the Czech…

  • Matt Smith

    Email me at mhsmith78@gmail.com

  • Shinguard

    Will the lad Rooney shine today for England?

    DFC-94 U17 boy’s are playing in the final at US Club regional.

    DFC 95 lost in a huge battle with Almaden last night in semi finals..at regional 0-0 in regulation then 1-1 in double OT then lost in PK shootout

  • Shinguard

    The Lad comes through….England is the sleeper can they pick-up pace and make a run?
    As Sir Alex would say…that’s my boy…a fine Lad indeed. 🙂 + the soccer god’s also helped today.

  • Soccer

    Pittsburg is really strong this year with many of returning players. But next year will be a very good chance for Pittsburg to take the championship tile. This year, with 3 seniors 15 juniors 3 sophomores and 1 freshman; Pittsburg will be a very good shape for next season.