July 26, 2007
Under the guidance of head coach Dan Abdalla, the TCU soccer program will open its regular season Aug. 31 against Texas in Austin. GoFrogs.com recently sat down with the third-year head coach.
TCU concluded its 2006 season slate with a 1-0 win over San Diego State and return eight starters, including 84.2 percent of its scoring this fall.
GoFrogs.com: What are your goals for this upcoming season?
Dan Abdalla: I think for us it's a matter of just getting better. We need to continue to improve like we have the past two years. I would like to see us accomplish some program firsts, like being ranked or beating a ranked opponent. One of our biggest goals is to do something that benchmarks our program.
GF: How big a role will your three seniors play this year?
DA: We expect a lot from them. All three of them contribute as much off the field as they do on the field and that is important to us. We are going to need a lot of involvement from them this season for us to be successful.
GF: How big was it for your underclassmen to get the type of experience they did last season?
DA: I think the experience and the number of minutes they got will help them be more seasoned during games. We played with the best in the country last season in Notre Dame and now they know that they can go out and compete with anybody. Now we just got to learn how to win.
GF: How will TCU improve upon not giving up goals late in a game?
DA: I think a lot of it's just a mentality. I thought at the end of last year we finished off learning how to win a game and that gave us a boost going into the off-season. We focused a lot on fitness over the summer and being more focused in every aspect of the game, so hopefully that will help with our results this season.
GF: What will the conference landscape look like this season?
DA: The great thing about our conference is that it's always going to be wide open. I think this season it will be a race between five or six teams. I think we will surprise some people in 2007. We have the talent to be able to compete for a conference championship. It's going to be a matter of our youth and leadership combining for us to be able to do that. It will be fun to see where everything falls.
GF: How big a role does the crowd play at Garvey-Rosenthal Soccer Stadium?
DA: I think its huge in every aspect of our program. TCU and Fort Worth have been tremendous. It's an exciting and electric atmosphere that is something special. It makes a huge difference and is a big part of our success.