A former professional soccer player offers team and individualized training close to home.
Gabriel Da Silva, who just goes by Gabby, was born in Brazil.
He’s been playing soccer for 11 years. He came to the U.S. to play soccer for North Carolina then played for Rayo OKC.
When asked what he enjoys most about soccer, his answer was simple… “score goals, have fun, and the fans.”
Da Silva decided to retire last year due to being almost 30 and some back problems, but just because he stopped playing the sport he loves doesn’t mean he didn’t want to help others play.
After he retired, Da Silva was contacted by OKC Energy about training and coaching opportunities and he immediately said yes.
Da Silva trains for OKC Energy West, which is part of the Canadian Valley Futbol Club.
OKC Energy West is stationed in Yukon, but plays on multiple fields including Wild Horse Park, Yukon Taylor Park, Yukon Ranchwood Park and El Reno.
Da Silva coaches U11 boys and girls and U10 boys. He also offers team and individualized training for those who are interested.
Private lessons are $50 per hour, and it costs $75 per player per month for teams.
Da Silva said his favorite part about training is witnessing the improvement of the youth players.
“You see they’re having fun. Soccer is growing here, and to watch them improve, it’s so cool. They’re doing things they’ve never done before,” he said.
Da Silva also said it’s important to realize that coaches and trainers through soccer, or sports in general, can build up leaders.
“So it’s not just about the sport, but teaching them how to become better people in how they work as a group,” he said.
Samantha See, one of Mustang High School’s soccer players, has trained with Da Silva.
See, a junior center forward, started out with basic movements in her training with Da Silva. She said he also does whatever training is age appropriate for the specific player.
Da Silva works a lot with See on her core, which she said is a major part of being a forward.
“He really makes sure I’m putting out the effort. He pushes me physically and mentally to be my best. I’ve seen a lot of growth since training with him. He’s made me a better player,” See said.
See usually trains with Da Silva one-on-one for an hour or an hour and a half each time, and “everyone around her as seen tremendous growth,” her mom Cathy said.
“He’s a phenomenal player and he’s just a good guy,” Cathy said of Da Silva. “I want to keep him happy and keep him at this club. He’s great with the kids.”
Da Silva’s visa expires in December so he’s applying to renew the visa and extend his stay. He will have to apply to extend the visa every year.
“It’s only short term so it’s kind of hard,” Da Silva said.
Cathy’s main focus is making sure Da Silva gets his visa each year and is with the Canadian Valley Futbol Club as long as possible.
“People should know the talent of the coaches at Canadian Valley,” she said.
To inquire about training or coaching from Da Silva, call him at 365-7262 or email him at [email protected].