Level of Hatred Toward Referees is Disturbing


By Tim Nash

I just spent five days watching experienced referees coach and mentor young officials at the US Youth Soccer Region III Championships.

I watched, listened and asked questions as some of the best and most experienced referees in the country spent time helping the next generation of officials improve in all aspects of officiating.

And guess what? None of the instruction included telling the referees to choose a team to screw. Not once were the young refs told to try to anger the crowd, or irritate the home fans.

But it happens, doesn’t it? We live in an era when every call is debated and scrutinized through multiple instant replays and fans get countless chances to see a controversial play that the ref gets to see once for a split second. Continue reading

Abby Dahlkemper Takes Big Steps in 2017

By Tim Nash

On Aug 19, for the 10th time in 18 games this season, the North Carolina Courage looked at the scoreboard at the end of the game and see a zero under their opponent’s name.

Ten shutouts have helped the Courage, who have allowed a league-low 14 goals through 18 games, secure a place atop the NWSL standings for most of the 2017 season.

The stingy defense can be credited to a number of different factors – a high-pressing defense starting athletic forwards, like Ashley Hatch, Jessica McDonald and Lynn Williams, an organized and aggressive midfield led by Sam Mewis and McCall Zerboni, and backline that features a veteran from New Zealand, Abby Erceg, and three players who have caught the eye of U.S. National team coach Jill Ellis – Jaelene Hinkle, Taylor Smith and Abby Dahlkemper. In goal, both Katelyn Rowland and Sabrina D’Angelo have shared the duties. Continue reading

Buy a Copy of “It’s Not the Glory”

Glory book cover 400



Also Available at Amazon.com

The 56th Minute, LLC is excited to announce the publication of a new book on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team by long-time soccer writer Tim Nash. It’s Not the Glory, the Remarkable First Thirty Years of U.S. Women’s Soccer, tells the extraordinary tale of what has become one of the most intriguing and socially relevant sports teams in history.

A skilled storyteller, Nash uses anecdotes from his observations and interviews with nearly 50 players and coaches from every generation to narrate the story from the very beginning in the mid 1980’s, through the 2015 World Cup championship.


It’s Not the Glory explains the team’s culture of excellence through the words of those who established it and nurtured it over the years. From Heinrichs and Akers on to Overbeck, Hamm, Foudy and Lilly, through Rampone, Wambach, Morgan and Lloyd, and everyone in between, It’s Not the Glory, details the character and characters that helped the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team have an enormous impact on society while rising to the very top of the women’s soccer world. Continue reading

Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak and Husband Tim Build Family at UCF

Roberts Sahaydak family

University of Central Florida coaches Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak and Tim Sahaydak with daughters, Evie and Layla


By Tim Nash

Every college soccer player has heard it, at least once, when they were being recruited.  College coaches, in an effort to make their program as appealing as possible, pull out the phrase during every visit.

“Our team is like a family,” they say. “We have a real family atmosphere here.”

But at the University of Central Florida, the women’s soccer team really is a family.

“That’s exactly what I tell recruits,” said Tiffany Roberts Sahaydak, the head women’s coach at UCF. “We really do have a family environment.”

Continue reading

I’d Be Glad to Call You Soccer

By Tim Nash

I never much liked Heineken, but I love their new commercials. Have you see them? They end with “You can call me soccer.”

heinekenLike probably all of you, I grew up playing soccer. Unlike probably many of you, it was during an era when, relative to today, not a whole lot of it was played, virtually none was watched, and all of it was criticized. National teams were virtually non-existent and youth national teams were rare. In fact, I was 31 when the U.S. men made it to the 1990 World Cup, the first time in my lifetime that happened. I was 32 when the first Women’s World Cup was played.

Media coverage? You’re kidding, right? To get soccer news, you subscribed to Soccer America and read the newspapers from large metropolitan areas. Finding soccer info in those papers was easy, if there was any. Step 1, pull out the sports section. Step 2, flip the section over so the back page is facing up. Step 3, look at the back pages for the catchall notes section where editors slap in short pieces to fill out the page. Step 4, Get disgusted when the one piece of soccer news chosen for that day is about hooligans. Step 5, try another paper. Continue reading