A centre back with Langley United’s U18 metro squad, Ryan Freda is forging a name for himself as a referee, and recently worked as an assistant in the Vancouver Whitecaps/Santa Cruz U15 residency match. Submitted photo

VIDEO: Decorated youth soccer player climbing refereeing ladder

Ryan Freda served as assistant referee for U15 Whitecaps residency match

There Ryan Freda was, running along the pitch at UBC’s Thunderbird Park, trying to keep his nerves and wits in check.

The student from Langley’s R.E. Mountain Secondary worked as the assistant referee for the Vancouver Whitecaps U15 residency team’s game against Santa Cruz late last month, and said he relished the pace of the game.

“Being engaged in the game the entire time is as draining as actually playing the game itself,” said 17-year-old Freda, an accomplished player in his own right.

“Knowing that my calls would and could define the outcome of the game meant full concentration and complete understanding of the rules.”

Freda started refereeing small-sided games for the Langley United Youth Soccer Association when he was just 13.

He started with the younger age groups — U8 and under — and quickly moved up the referee ranks, working up to the U12 age group in only a couple of months. In the fall of 2017, Freda took the entry level course in order to referee older aged groups and divisions.

His skills and demeanor caught the attention of many coaches, as well as LUSA head referee, Rubin Smilev.

So when the Vancouver Whitecaps came looking for an assistant referee for their U15 residency team last month, Freda was on top of that list.

“He said, ‘Hey, you’ve got some actual ability (as an official) and you can go somewhere,’” Freda related, of his conversation with Smilev. “He said ‘I’d like you get in touch with the referee who assigns all the Whitecaps games.’ I’m like, ‘okay, sure.’”

Passion for the sport

Freda has been playing with Langley United since he was four years old.

He instantly fell in love with the sport and his passion for the game has grown tremendously over the years. Freda is so dedicated to the ‘beautiful game,’ that he spends his time in his backyard working diligently on dribbling, ball control, kicking and shooting.

Since age 11, Freda has played on LUSA select teams and he currently plays for the U18 metro squad as a centre back.

His soccer achievements to date include:

• LUSA Technical Department’s All-Star 11 Male Team: 2014, ‘16, and ‘17

• LUSA Most Promising Player: 2017

• Metro Select League Best Defender and Best Overall Player: 2016/2017 season.

Notable team achievements to date:

• 2013, B-Cup Bronze — B.C. championships;

• 2015, B-Cup Gold — B.C. championships; and

• 2017 – A-Cup Silver — B.C. championships.

Freda said officiating and playing are two totally different animals.

“You see the game from a completely different perspective,” Freda said. “When you’re playing, you’re so much more engaged about getting the ball; with refereeing, you’ve got to have a 360 (degree) view of what the players are doing and what the coaches are even doing.”

There are some commonalities in terms of pressure on the pitch, Freda said, but with one significant difference.

“Playing pressure is more like, if you make a mistake it can cost you a goal,” he elaborated. “I guess it’s the same for refereeing, but you don’t have 50 parents yelling at you if you make a mistake.”

“At LUSA, we are extremely proud of Ryan,” said LUSA’s director of communications Anne Fronteddu. “He will continue to referee within our club, and take all the opportunities given to him by B.C. Soccer.”

 

A centre back with Langley United’s U18 metro squad, Ryan Freda is forging a name for himself as a referee, and recently worked as an assistant in the Vancouver Whitecaps/Santa Cruz U15 residency match. Submitted photo

A member of Langley United’s U18 metro boys soccer team, Ryan Freda worked as an assistant referee in the Vancouver Whitecaps/Santa Cruz U15 residency match last month at UBC’s varsity field. Troy Landrevillle Langley Times

Ryan Freda was about a launch a shot as a member of Langley United’s U18 metro squad. Freda is also forging a name for himself as a referee, and recently worked as an assistant in the Vancouver Whitecaps/Santa Cruz U15 residency match. Submitted photo

Just Posted

Chilliwack Chiefs clinch first place with win over Prince George

The Chiefs were out-shot 36-13 but goalie Daniel Chenard was superb in a battle of the BCHL’s best.

New Chilliwack YMCA was ‘worth the wait’ say visitors

Family Day will mark officially opening for new building, after sneak peek tours on Saturday

Nanaimo Clippers goalie steals a win from Chilliwack Chiefs

Landon Pavlisin was outstanding in the Clipper net, leading Nanaimo to a 2-1 road victory.

More people in Chiliwack coming in to shelters to get out of the cold

Ruth and Naomi’s went over-capacity this week to accommodate shelter guests coming in from the cold

Prominent Chilliwack realtor says he doesn’t know how child porn got on his computer

Closing arguments heard in Ian Robert Meissner’s trial for accessing and possessing child pornography

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

B.C. athlete takes home gold in freestyle aerials at Canada Games

Brayden Kuroda won the event with a combined score of 121.65.

Pedestrian in serious condition after hit by car downtown Abbotsford

A youth was also hit, suffered minor injuries, police say

Cabinet likely to extend deadline to reconsider Trans Mountain pipeline

New round of consultations with Indigenous communities is coming

B.C. government provides $75,000 towards salmon study

Study looks at abundance and health of Pacific salmon in Gulf of Alaska

Murdered and missing honoured at Stolen Sisters Memorial March in B.C.

‘We come together to make change within the systems in our society’

UBC researchers develop inexpensive tool to test drinking water

The tricoder can test for biological contamination in real-time

Disgraced ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison

He was convicted of having illicit online contact with a 15-year-old North Carolina girl in 2017

Most Read