Wednesday, August 4th, 2021 -- Two Arizona natives have made national news the past few weeks as Rob Valentino (Cave Creek/Pinnacle HS) was named as the interim head coach for Atlanta United FC and Ventura Alvarado (Phoenix) has signed with Inter Miami.
Valentino is now the 4th Arizona native to be coaching professional soccer this year joining Greg Vanney (Tempe) who has his LA Galaxy squad sitting third in the Western Conference. The other two natives are Rick Shantz (Tucson) and Danny Cruz (Glendale) who have both their clubs, Phoenix Rising and Louisville City, sitting first in their respective conferences as well. Cruz is also listed as an interim coach and has been at the helm for all but one match this season.
Valentino played locally for Sereno Soccer Club and ended his eight-year professional career playing for Arizona United in 2015.
Alvarado, who played locally for Tuzos, joins Inter Miami after spending more than 10 years playing in Liga MX for Club America, Necaxa, Santos Laguna, and Atletico San Luis. He won the CONCACAF Champions League twice with Club America and has earned 13 caps with the United States Men's National Team.