Updated: Oct 18, 2019
Christian Fuchs is an international soccer star who has played the beautiful game professionally for over a decade. He currently plays in the English Premier League for the Leicester City FC Foxes (LCFC). He was a crucial piece of the Foxes during their improbable Premier League Championship season in 2015/2016. Since then, he has remained a staple in the lineup and a vital leader in the defense for LCFC. Christian has also proved valuable on the pitch for his native home country of Austria. He has capped 78 games for the “Rot-Weiss-Rote" squad, many of which being the captain.
His experience on the field is extensive with over 600 games for club and country. He has performed at the highest levels within the German Bundesliga, English Premier League, Champions League, and European Championships.
Despite still suiting up on Saturdays in arguably the best soccer league in the world, Christian is also heavily involved with ventures off the field. He is the Founder and President of Fox Soccer Academy (FSA). This soccer academy has locations in Austria, the UK, and the United States and is dedicated to helping the youth improve their game and achieve their footballing goals just as Christian has experienced himself. In addition to that, he and wife Raluca recently purchased a sports venue in Warwick, NY called Hudson Sports Complex (HSC). The ex-correctional facility has existing turf fields, both indoors and out, and acres of land for expansion. The goal is to make HSC a sporting and entertainment destination just an hour outside of NYC.
Christian, what made you start a soccer academy in the USA?
I saw the need for a more substantial and professional soccer academy in the greater NYC area due to first-hand experiences. For example, a couple years ago, my son was dancing with his lunchbox for 30 minutes being bored and not supervised during several soccer sessions we brought him to. Initially, this simple notion was a large enough reason for me to bring about change, but then I really started to think about it...I thought, “I’m lucky enough to have the resources, the know-how, over 16 years of professional soccer under my belt...why not act and do something about it?” I knew I had the drive and ambition to make soccer better here in the US and truthfully, it selfishly came out of me just wanting better for my son. In effect, we established Fox Soccer Academy in 2014 and ever since, the growth of our program has been tremendous.
Please explain further?
Our immediate focus was simply summer camps. My wife and I have always wanted our children to remain active in the summer months and we thought, “Why not just start providing camps for others?”
We started FSA in New York in June of 2014. We organized a single week of camp and were able to host 25 children. Although it was just one week, looking back, it set the foundation for what the future was to become. Due to the amazing feedback and positive testimonials, our program grew the next summer through mostly good old fashioned word of mouth! The following summer, our number grew to 100 children over two weeks!
Since January 2019, we began putting a lot of focus on providing not only camps, but Supplemental Training all-year round. Our goal with FSA Supplemental Training is to continue to support players and allow them to develop their skills under the tutelage of prominent coaches and basing our curriculum upon English Premier League teachings. So far, the first year has been exceptional and I am very proud of how far we have come.
What makes Fox Soccer Academy different to other local academies?
Fox Soccer Academy is quite extensive as we are very fortunate to have locations across the world. In addition to the United States, we have similar setups in England and Austria which makes us an international organization that local talent can benefit from.
The entire foundation of our training comes from English Premier League curriculums which I developed with our International Head of Coaching, Mark Smith. All of our programs in each individual country are consistent as they are based on the same model. Children should have the chance to train exactly the same as I do every day at Leicester City. Therefore, our coaches are visiting the trainings of Leicester City on a regular basis to learn from the best in the business.
Our international setup allows us to help exceptionally talented kids to be showcased in front of professional academies. Again, I am not only talking about local academies...as of today, we have had three players from the USA come to England or Austria to train at academies for a chance to be seen. Even the Head of Youth Recruitment of Leicester City, Bill Wall, was in New York this past July to have a look at our players and was very amazed by the level of play. We are working with several teams and agents in all the countries to create pathways into professional soccer. We want dreams to come true and we are creating these chances as best as we can.
And since I am used to high standards as a professional soccer player, I am dedicated to surrounding myself with a coaching staff who are experienced and professionals in their own right. Potential coaches are being interviewed and have to pass a three month trial before they become FSA coaches to ensure the quality is at a top level and meets our standards of coaching.
Many people might think that somebody is running Fox Soccer Academy and you're acting as a patron. How involved are you?
I am struggling at the moment with the storage of my computer since so much information from all different countries is being saved on it. Even my external hard drive is almost at the max. But jokes aside, I have people in place in each country that are leading the operations and I am in touch with them on a daily basis. It is important to me that I remain close to my colleagues and that we communicate short and long term goals on a regular basis. When the name Fuchs is on a product, you should be assured that the person behind the operations is 100% Christian Fuchs. Coaching is not my thing, but managing the programs, putting the structures into place, and designing most of the graphics you see online is where I like to leave my stamp. I will even claim the whole Fox Soccer Academy website design as mine which took me a couple of hours to make look proper for every country. And besides all the admin work, I love to stand on the field with our players and play the game with them. Like I said, coaching is not really my thing, but everything else that comes with the beautiful game is perfect for me.
You said earlier that your ambition to create Fox Soccer Academy was because of your negative experience with your son. I believe this has changed over the years?
Absolutely. The first week in 2014 was a test run to see the demand. It was all confirmed the following year by quadrupling the numbers. We are taking Fox Soccer Academy very serious. Due to the initial success, our goals have changed quite a bit. We certainly want to remained focus on camps, combines, and training, but we are always thinking about how we can improve so we can become the best soccer academy in the tri-state area.
My wife Raluca and I have recently purchased Hudson Sports Complex, a 36 acre sports facility in Warwick, NY. It is only about an hour outside of NYC and has now become the new home of Fox Soccer Academy in the US. It will also be the venue for many other sports and events. We believe this purchase and overall commitment speaks to how dedicated we are regarding our passions and future goals.
With that being said, our Supplemental Program is very important to us for the immediate future as we continue to think more long term. We have also just debuted our FSA PRO team in the UPSL which has been very successful in just a matter of months. FSA training and now our FSA PRO club are going to be a great foundation in the short term, but in the next coming years for sure.
We are never satisfied though...we won't stop there. We have new programs coming on a regular basis so children can get top training all-year round. As I mentioned, the whole purpose was to help improve the game of soccer here in the US and it needs to start young which is why our programs are primarily for children between the ages of 4-16. Talent development and promotion is our main focus. In January, we are starting with our Little Foxes program so our youngest ones can learn early on how to work in a team as well as improving their coordination skills. For the Spring, we are looking to recruit a high school team and bring in scouts to have a look at the players during their games.
What programs are you currently offering at Hudson Sports Complex and the greater New York area?
We have a good variety of programs setup right now at HSC. Our Supplemental Training programs are going strong in addition to group, 1-on-1 private training, and goalkeeper training clinics. We also have some satellite locations in Manhattan and further Upstate New York where we offer supplemental training. All our programs are aimed for boys and girls and are excited for all the young children to see what their hard work can create as the FSA PRO symbolizes top-level players and how training can help you achieve your goals.
(Editor: All programs are listed below)
What is FSA Alliance?
Our clear goal is to support talent and clubs to become better. With FSA Alliance we offer to bring our coaches and curriculum to clubs and train their teams. This can be very individual based on the needs and demands of each individual team. We are currently working with 4 different clubs and the club officials are impressed by the improvement of their players.
FSA PRO USA just finished their third league game in the UPSL in an amazing manner. What is the idea behind FSA PRO?
I want to create pathways for players so they can present themselves on a big stage that can allow them to be seen across the country. We have a mix of young and more senior players which has created a great culture of teamwork and camaraderie. With Michael Holzer as our Manager, we know we have brought in the right man for the job. He is a very established coach who is leading our team in the right direction through his passion and high level training.
There is already a pathway with Fox Soccer Academy as children can join our Academy at 4 years old. As they get older and develop their skills though, they will then have the opportunity to join the FSA PRO team so they can continue to improve and hopefully get noticed by the right people.
Also, the FSA PRO program is meant to offer opportunities beyond the US border. We are currently working with about 100 players, between the ages of 16-19, in England through the FSA PRO UK program. These players are playing at the highest college-level league and are being showcased to English pro academies on a monthly basis. This setup is extremely unique. Anybody in the US within that age range can join our English team. Our entire model is built for this type of progression and we are putting all of this into place so these young players can have an opportunity to make it into professional soccer.
Funny enough, just this past summer, our FSA PRO UK team traveled to Atlantic City in NJ and won the EDP college showcase. Keep in mind, this was our first ever season with FSA PRO UK! The skill level of our team is really high and the games at the EDP tournament confirmed that our teaching and philosophy are working.
Finally we would like to know what are your ambitions for Fox Soccer Academy for the following years?
Continuing to develop talent is the main purpose, the main goal. I simply love to give young and ambitious soccer players the opportunity to reach their full potential. We are a program built around continuously improvement and our Supplemental Training programs among others are created for this purpose. We want young players to improve their current abilities and develop new skills so they can strive towards reaching the highest level this game has to offer.
See, when I was 11 years old, living in Austria, the Austrian academies from professional clubs told me I was not good enough to make it pro. 16 years later, I was Premier League Champion and captained my country at the EURO 2016 tournament. I am proud of what I have achieved through hard work and doing more than the rest. With Fox Soccer Academy, I want to support talent and who knows, maybe in 10, 20 years time we have one of our players captaining the US National Team at a World Cup. Something to this effect would be an amazing achievement for the entire organization.
Speaking of youth development, the launch of FSA PREMIER was recently announced. Can you elaborate on this new venture?
We always had major dreams and plans to expand into a proper academy with youth teams ranging from beginner levels towards more professional ranks. With our recent development of our semi-professional adult men's team, FSA PRO, who compete in the UPSL, we felt it was only natural to begin our journey of creating youth travel teams. In effect, we've officially announced our plans for what is called, "FSA PREMIER."
We are so proud of what the future holds as we look to build clubs from the U8 age range all the way to FSA PRO. Our goal is to create a whole new soccer community in Warwick and the Hudson Valley. We want all of our teams working together towards common goals and with the same winning mentality. Each day we want to strive to get better and create a community of teams everybody can be proud of!
The overarching goal of FSA PREMIER is simple: We want to provide the best year-round training and guidance so players can reach their potential and surpass their goals. We have designed a clear structure of progression within our programs and age groups as we want create opportunities and build pathways so talented players can pursue their ultimate dreams. We have the privilege to work closely with professional scouts and agents so we can help talented players get noticed by national and international clubs.
We are hoping to build something great and to grow the entire Fox Family. If you are interested please click here to register for our upcoming FSA PREMIER tryouts!
Finally, I want to say that spreading the love for the best game in the world is all the way on the top of my list. Anyone who has a passion for soccer is welcome at Fox Soccer Academy.
For more information about our current programs email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Fox Soccer Academy Programs
(players born between 2004 - 2011)
(children born between 2013 - 2015)
(for field players)
(group and 1on1 training)
FSA PRO USA
Join us for our home games and support your local heroes! TICKETS HERE.
Home games are played at Hudson Sports Complex in Warwick, NY.
FSA PRO UK
Fox Soccer Academy UK
Fox Soccer Academy Austria