Helping foster the development of the next generation of soccer standouts is important for FC Tucson and to the club’s midfielder Daniel Bedoya.
Bedoya first starting coaching kids at David Villa’s academy in New York City and found that he enjoyed his time with the younger players.
“I like coaching little kids. I started out coaching 3 to 6 year olds, then went on to 8 to 11 year olds. I think I have the patience to help them out and have fun with them.”Daniel Bedoya
The 28-year-old midfielder eventually went on to study Sports Management at St. John’s University, hoping that he could spend the rest of his days playing the sport. But, he found his knack with the kids and wishes to continue coaching and be there for whoever needs him.
Bedoya also got his start in the sport at a young age in Medellin, Colombia. He continued playing the sport after making the move to the United States in 2002 when he was just eight years old. His first taste of success was when he joined the New York Olympic Development Program (ODP) team, eventually making it to regionals and nationals. He also featured for the United States U-14 and U-15 Boy’s National Team.
Bedoya found a lot of success in his playing career in his youth, but credits his brother for helping pave his path.
“I grew up on what my brother liked. He liked Barcelona and ever since then I’ve followed Barcelona and soccer.” Bedoya said.
Following FC Barcelona from his brother also introduced the midfielder to Andres Iniesta. Liking the playing style of the Spaniard, Bedoya encompassed that into his own career and eventually also took on wearing the No. 8 jersey.
Bedoya went on to start playing with Bolanos in Flushing Meadow Park, Queens, before then joining Bay Side Aston Villa Flames in his youth. He played well with both teams and eventually joined the Red Bull Academy U-18 where he featured with the team for two years.
After leaving Red Bulls, he played with many Premier Development League teams and National Premier Soccer League teams. His brother helped continue Bedoya’s career by helping pay for combines and hotel rooms.
He got his break in 2018 when playing with the Long Island Roughriders. The team had a scrimmage against Major League Soccer side New York City FC. After the match, NYCFC were impressed with Bedoya and signed him.
He then continued his career in the Dominican Republic playing with Atletico Pantoja before returning to the New York to feature with New Amsterdam FC. He signed with FC Tucson in 2021.
Bedoya had three goals and three assists in 29 matches last year. He is especially dangerous on set pieces for Tucson.
Never been one to talk much, likes to let his football do the talking but, he does enjoy singing. He likes lyrics and since he was little has always tried to learn lyrics – likes R&B, Regaton, Macata likes to listen to a song at least 5-10 times to learn it. If a new song comes out, spends time listening to it to try and learn it
Also considers himself a foodie – loves to find spots to eat – likes Hawaiian pizza also doesn’t mind deep dish but the best pizza place is definitely in New York. Loves sweets – always will try to have somethign sweet after every meal like peanut M&Ms or Skittles.