Perry Van Der Beck made history with the Tampa Bay Rowdies in 1978 as the first high school soccer player ever drafted by a North American Soccer League team. The talented midfielder stood out as an amateur by winning two high school state championships and representing the United States in international competition at every level, including the Olympic team. Van Der Beck enjoyed a 19-year playing career, nine of which came as a member of the Rowdies. Today, Van Der Beck serves as the Technical Directory and Director of Player Development for the Rowdies in the USSF Division 2 soccer league. Van Der Beck recently took time out to chat about everything and anything related to his life’s passion: soccer. The following is the conclusion of a two-part interview with Van Der Beck.
To read more, check out the Tampa Sports History blog, or the July 9 print edition of La Gaceta newspaper.