With the exception of talking with Bernie Lilavois about the United States National Arena Soccer Team earlier this off-season, meeting with Nick Perera is our first “player” interview outside the realm of the San Diego Sockers. I had met Nick a couple of times over the past few years, and with him living in nearby North County I was able to find him on the campus of Palomar College where he was gracious enough to take a break from him coaching duties.
We spoke of his youth in Belgium and how he came to be a walk-on at the UC Santa Barbara. There he was an important part of UCSB winning the NCAA Division I Soccer Championship. He earned the MVP for that run. Nick talks about the path that eventually brought him to arena soccer in San Diego, and then three years with the Milwaukee Wave, where they won the MISL Championship in his first season. Today he is looking forward to his second season with the Tacoma Stars, where he has found a new playing home following a return engagement in San Diego and stints with Ontario and Syracuse.
Nick also talks about his passion for beach soccer and how he entrenched himself as a fixture on the United States National Beach Soccer Team. He has represented the USNBST for a number of tournaments, including the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Tahiti 2013.
Nick made headlines in our interview by announcing an international beach soccer tournament coming up this October in Oceanside, California. He is also currently training for another beach soccer tournament coming soon in Hungary.
Nick has a long standing friendship with Sockers goalkeeper Chris Toth who also starts for the USNBST, and we closed the discussion talking about Chris’s recent marriage and Nick’s family.
As always, thanks for watching!