Michael Balogun | Photo courtesy EP Locomotive
El Paso Locomotive Youth Soccer has expanded its staff, adding Michael Balogun and Ana Guevara to help lead the next wave of young soccer players in El Paso.
“We are pleased to have Michael Balogun and Ana Guevara joining our staff,” said Director of Youth Soccer for El Paso Locomotive, Bob Bigney. “These additions will allow us to grow and provide unmatched opportunities to youth players in this area.”
Balogun brings extensive experience, both as a player and coach, to the Locomotive Youth Soccer Club joining as a Youth Soccer Club Coordinator. Originally from Nigeria, Michael Balogun moved to Houston when he was young and played for Houstonians, a well-known soccer club in the Houston area. Moving through the Olympic Development Program (ODP) ranks, Balogun had the opportunity to represent the United States at the U17 national team level and spent two years in the Residency Program in Bradenton, Florida.
After a successful youth playing career, Balogun attended the University of Akron, playing for one of the top NCAA Division 1 soccer programs in the country, winning an NCAA D1 National Championship in 2010 with the Zips. Moving into the coaching ranks after Akron, Michael Balogun worked in top youth soccer clubs in the Houston area and was involved with regional and national soccer organizations, including the ODP and Elite Clubs National League (ECNL).
“I realized early on I had a passion for working with young people and to be able to combine that with my lifelong passion for soccer was a dream,” shared Balogun. “To mentor and encourage young players through the highs and lows of development is rewarding.”
“Having Michael work with all our club teams, players, and coaches will boost our youth club,” noted Bigney. “His experience and expertise will be welcomed as he helps develop and run the youth soccer offerings Locomotive FC bring to El Paso.”
Balogun currently holds his USSF B License and will be starting the process for his USSF A License shortly. Michael and his wife Kathryn, who serves as the Head Coach for the Women’s Soccer Program at UTEP, have been in the El Paso area for two years and are thrilled to call the borderland home.
Ana Guevara joins Balogun as an addition to the youth soccer staff as an Administrative Coordinator. Guevara, who has worked in various positions within the senior club, will work in a communications and administrative role for Locomotive Youth Soccer and will be a valuable resource for all families involved in Locomotive youth soccer activities.
“Ana has been around Locomotive soccer for a while now, working in the front office, the team store, and with some of our youth soccer programs,” said Bigney. “She is friendly, knowledgeable, and will be able to assist families with anything they might need with our programs.”
Both Michael Balogun and Ana Guevara begin their roles with Locomotive Youth Soccer immediately, joining J.C. Garzon – who has worked in youth soccer while serving as the Locomotive Goalkeeper Coach for the past two years.
Club officials say that fans can expect further announcements from Locomotive Youth Soccer about the upcoming Spring 2021 youth soccer season.