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Team Profile - American School in Barcelona

The American School in Barcelona Boys’ Soccer program returns to the excitement and drama of interscholastic competition with lofty ambitions following a successful campaign in 2019. The highlight of that season came when the team were crowned champions of the Iberian League High School tournament, a competition held for schools on the Iberian peninsula. That success was followed in short order by a second place finish in the European Sports Conference tournament at the International School of Lausanne in Switzerland in November 2019. The runners-up finish was their second in as many years as they were also finalists in  2018. The ESC tournament features teams from all around Europe, including from France, Switzerland, Portugal, and Italy, so the competition is fierce and the trophy is coveted. Now, after a long 18 months with the gates of match fields all over the world under lock and key, the ASB boys have their eyes on a pair of championships in the upcoming campaign.

 

The team’s head coach, Moussa Kone, explains, the players were fortunately able to spend time training together to continue their individual and collective growth, and the upcoming return to match competition is truly exciting. “We need to get that game experience to reach our potential,” says Kone. When asked to explain some of those areas of potential strength, coach Kone highlights several key areas. “The team tries to play a true Spanish style, moving the ball as a team up the field with short passes and keeping the majority of possession.” Kone credits the players with technical proficiency, explaining, “We are good in 1v1 situations and accurate with our passes and shooting.” 

 

One of the players that Kone will look to rely on in the team’s attack is senior Sandor Cuppa, whose self-admitted strengths are, “...using my speed on offense and 1v1 skills”. The  Spanish-born winger has played at several top clubs in Barcelona, including Hospitalet FC and Club Athletic Sant Just. As he enters his final season, Cuppa aims to use his experience to lead the group to another ESC championship. “We have many players of different ages so we are getting used to playing together as a team,” says Cuppa. 

 

In talking about the team’s depth, coach Kone detailed a picture of a big group of motivated players with lots of quality. Another player who Kone will rely on to drive the team forward, junior defender Pascal Bonifacie, highlights the numbers of players as a strength for the group. Bonifacie carries French and American passports but has played in Barcelona for his formative years and, like Cuppa, has spent time at Club Athletic Sant Just. When asked to describe the atmosphere in the team, Bonifacie explains, it is, “...positive and competitive, as the 40 boys train together.” While that might seem like a lot of players to manage and keep cohesion, Bonifacie maintains the group is united in their goal of success. “It is not a team of stars, it is a team that takes pride in playing like a true team,” says Bonifacie.

 

The ASB boys travel to the International School of Zug and Luzern in November to fight for another ESC trophy. They hold high hopes for a tournament title, but the stakes are also somewhat higher this year. As Bonficacie says, with a smile, “We want to be the number 1 ranked team in the world.”

In Tiro Sports International High School Girls' Soccer World Rankings, European Schools Take Top 3 Spots

In a follow-up to the announcement of the Boys' Rankings last week, Tiro is excited to announce the Girls' International High School Soccer Rankings. Leading the way is the International School of Lausanne out of Switzerland, followed by UK pair ACS Cobham (2) and TASIS London (3) . The rankings feature an even spread of schools from Europe, Asia, and South America, along with The American School Foundation out of Mexico.  The full list is as follows:

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List leaders International School of Lausanne earn their laurels thanks to a really impressive few years, serving as two times reigning champions (2018, 2019) of the European Sports Conference. They are joined in the Top 25 by ESC opponents Carlucci American International School of Lisbon (Portugal, 15) and International School of Zug and Luzern (Switzerland, 20). 

 

After a really incredible recent run of form, the girls' program out of ACS Cobham (UK) moves ahead of their boys' counterparts on their respective list to Number 2. The Cobham girls have a habit of winning each tournament and division they compete in; in 2019, they were the champions of both the International School Sports Tournament conference, and the national ISFA tournament. While not an international school competition, the ISFA (Independent Schools Football Association) features the most competitive private and preparatory schools from around the UK, including some of the best independent high schools in the world. To win just one of those events is an achievement; to win them both is remarkable.

 

TASIS London take 3rd spot after being crowned champions of the International School Athletics Association competition in 2019.The list also features ISAA member schools ACS Hillingdon (UK, 14) and The British School in the Netherlands (22).

 

Rounding out the top 5 are champions of the last SEASAC competition, UWC East (Singapore, 4) and giants of the KAIAC, Seoul Foreign School (Korea, 5). 

 

Elsewhere on the list, the first representative of South America comes in at No. 8 in Colegio Americano de Quito (Peru), followed by the American School of Belo Horizonte (Brazil, 11), Graded School - The American School of Sao Paulo (Brazil, 17), and St Paul's School (Brazil, 21).

In First Ever World International High School Boys Soccer Rankings, Chadwick International School (KOR) Takes Top Spot

With the academic school year beginning at high schools all over the world, players will shortly begin training and competing for their high school athletics teams. Though many leagues will be playing shorter or altered seasons with more games against local opponents and with fewer trips across borders or to regional tournaments, there is a collective feeling of optimism after 18 long months with such limited inter-scholastic competition. To celebrate this optimism, Tiro would like to release the first ever ranking of the best boys’ international high school in leagues around the world. 

 

The chart includes schools representing Asia, Europe, and South America, as well New Zealand and Mexico. The majority of schools compete in the most competitive international high school conferences and leagues in their respective regions. The list is as follows:

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Topping the list is Chadwick International School from the KAIAC in South Korea. Chadwick are the reigning champions of the KAIAC in 2019, and were also champions of the 2021 Korea Cup, which stood in place of the regular league tournament and had fewer teams participating. Coach David Snipes, who both leads the team as head coach and also oversees the Chadwick athletic department, is hopeful that the team can keep their winning tradition alive with what he describes as an exciting crop of players in the program. Snipes will look to the influence of brothers Charlie and Nate Kim, as well as exciting attacker Thomas Kong to take the program into the new season, while relying on the sturdy experience of players like senior center back/fullback Andrew Park to keep the team resilient at the back.

 

Also representing the KAIAC on this list are Yongsan International School of Seoul (9) and Seoul Foreign School (22). Yongsan were runners up in the KAIAC Championship in 2019, while Seoul Foreign have a very deep squad with loads of talent to potentially challenge for a KAIAC title.

 

Our second pick is also from the Asian continent, this time from the island nation of Singapore: United World College SE Asia, Dover Campus. UWC Dover enter the new academic year with two championship titles to their name from their last competitive soccer season. They were champions of the SEASAC 7s tournament at Alice Smith School in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in November 2019, and they also won the Singaporean International School League in autumn of 2019. Though they will miss the likes of Ivor Teagle and Tejas Sarna, who will be playing their first seasons at College of the Holy Cross (NCAA Division 1) and Swarthmore College (NCAA Division III) respectively, as well as Nico Anstee, who returns to Australia to begin his secondary education, they have a great group of younger players eager to excite and lead the program to another SEASAC title. Among these are Connar Mackay, Kosei Igarashi, and Shlok Kaul, who is fresh off trials at several professional academies in Europe. Also in the Top 25 are SEASAC opponents NIST International School from Bangkok (13th) and local rivals Singapore American School (6th), who were most recent champions of the IASIS conference (Interscholastic Association of Southeast Asian Schools).

 

Rounding out the top 3 is the American School of Paris (ASP). ASP earned the title of Champions of the International School Sports Tournament (ISST) in 2019 after defeating Zurich International School (ZIS) in the final. The game went to penalties after finishing 2-2 in regulation, and ASP were able to convert the additional penalty, winning 5-4. The win was an especially impressive achievement against such a difficult opponent; ZIS were tournament champions of the Sports Conference of International Schools (SCIS) in addition to ISST finalists, and as such, come in at the 8th spot on our rankings. 

 

Other notable inclusions are Zurich International School (Switzerland, 8th), American School of London (UK, 11th), and Scots College (New Zealand, 17). Sneaking in and rounding out the list are two Brazilian international schools: St Paul’s School (24) and Graded School - The American School of Sao Paulo (25), also located in Sao Paulo. 

 

Please follow along with us as this list shifts and changes, and as we bring more exciting news from the world of International High School soccer.