May 10, 2012
Soccer in the inner city represents a different world, a world that Matt Safar of Uniontown, Ohio knows very well. Safar, the head coach of Akron Garfield’s boys and girls soccer teams, has embraced the diversity of the beautiful game found there. His high school squads resemble the United Nations with players from Laos, Mexico, Palestine, Vietnam, and Japan participating in a program that has gone leaps and bounds under Safar’s expert tutelage.
“It has been the most unique experience that I ever had,” Safar declared. “We have people from all walks of life. We try to bring them together with a common goal. For many it is the one positive thing they have in life, something they cherish.”
Players from different religions and cultures coming together to play the world’s most popular sport is something quite special to see. It doesn’t matter if they are white, African-American, Muslim, or Buddhist, everyone feels welcome and accepted, joined by a common objective.