UOIT soccer coach continues success

Photo by Allan Fournier

Peyvand Mossavat coaching his men's Ridgebacks team.

Peyvand Mossavat has brought lots of success to UOIT since becoming coach of the Ridgebacks men’s and women’s soccer teams.

But he’s also playing a role in the growth of local soccer among younger players.

Mossavat, 47, spent his playing days in and around the Canadian Soccer League and National Professional Soccer League playing for the Toronto Olympians, Toronto Supra and more.

He now coaches the UOIT Ridgebacks men’s and women’s teams and has been for the last six years.

He has been named Ontario University Athletics (OUA) coach of the year four times and was named the USports coach of the year in 2016 after helping the UOIT women to their first ever OUA championship. The Ridgebacks clinched a bronze medal at nationals that same season.

Mossavat also coached the Ryerson Rams and the York Lions prior to accepting the head coach role at UOIT.

“I joined UOIT because they supported my philosophy and shared the same vision as me. They were able to understand what it takes to be successful,” said Mossavat.

He also coached the Canadian women’s national team in 2015 and 2017 at the Summer Universiade, an international university sports and cultural event in Gwangiu, South Korea and Taipei, Taiwan.

Along with coaching at university level, Mossavat also helps out in the community and recently took on the academy director role at DeRo United Futbol Academy in Oshawa.

DeRo Academy is owned by former Toronto FC player Dwayne DeRosario and was formed to helps young kids in the community grow as players and people.

“I was always quite interested in coaching,” said Mossavat. “I always wanted to give back in a way and I think there was always a teacher in me and I think teaching and coaching goes hand in hand.”

He has coached for about 30 years now and has seen soccer grow. He said the game has become faster and more tactical, with different formations and play. He says while the game is changing, it is important as a coach to grow with it.

“Well, you’re always as a coach evolving because the game is evolving,” said Mossavat. “You have to be able to change and grow and it has impacted me because I am always trying to educate myself more.”

Mossavat says great things are happening in the local soccer community. He says UOIT and Durham College are growing and will be adding new soccer fields in the next few years.

At DeRo academy, he oversees the recruitment of promising young players.

“I recently took on the academy director role at DeRo United Academy here in Oshawa to help grow local soccer within the community,” he said.

At UOIT, Mossavat says success for the organization has come down to the players buying into his philosophy.

“I contribute part of our success at UOIT to the great people around me,” he said. “Great players have bought into our vision and they work hard every day to make our vision come true.”

Mossavat says he sees himself coaching for at least the next 10 years but even after his coaching career ends, he says soccer will always be his passion.

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Pierre Sanz is a second year journalism student who has a passion for broadcast and writing about sports, specifically soccer. Pierre hopes to pursue a career in sports journalism after college.