Anthony Rozzano wears many hats. From young soccer prodigy in Webster NY, to All-American High School Soccer Star, All Conference Division I athlete, Rochester Lancer, and coach at Empire Academy, he is one of the more talented players to ever emerge from the Greater Rochester area.
What makes his ascent to soccer greatness even more impressive is that he did not come from a soccer family, and had to put in the time to craft his game to what it is today. His mother was a cheerleader, and his father was a baseball player. He got his start in soccer growing up as a 7 year old when his parents had mutual friends whose children played soccer. His mother encouraged him to start playing and he caught on quickly. Always playing with kids a year older, he was able to develop his game rapidly. He started playing travel soccer in Webster until his senior year of High School, where he took his game to the next level by playing for Empire Academy, the top developmental team in Western New York.
A student of the game, he is just as comfortable playing left fullback as he is striker or center midfield. Where ever he is called upon on the field, he is able to provide cover. The Dutch coined the term "Total Football" which is a tactical theory that any outfield player can take over the role of any other player in a team. This theory is the embodiment of Anthony's approach to the game.
I had a chance to talk to Anthony as we discussed how his soccer career got started, becoming an All-American High School Soccer Player, his time at SUNY Albany, his coaching aspirations, and the birth of the "Red Mamba".