Cayman scores U20 women coaches

One aspect of Cayman sports with huge upside is women’s football. The ladies now have an extra bounce in their step. 

The Cayman Islands Football Association officially swore in its new national women’s program coaches. Eric Dobrzanski is the new head coach of the Under-20 national women’s team, which can highlight girls like Shanice Monteith. Serving as his assistant coach will be Lee Blenman. 

On hand for the brief presentation at the football association office in Prospect was president Jeff Webb. He stated that the duo were here to bolster Cayman football. 

“I offer my sincere thanks to Eric and Lee who agreed to come on board a few months ago,” Webb said. “From February we’ve been working on this and they have visited four or five times over the last several months. They genuinely want to assist Cayman football. They were impressed with Cayman football at the U17 World Cup and wanted to get involved. They travelled a great distance and they’re here to invest their energy, time and knowledge. 

“It shows other members of the football fraternity appreciate our efforts. They are reaching out to us and taking the initiative. At the end of the day it’s about raising the standard of Cayman football and developing our girls. The team has been training and they will be great ambassadors to the country. We feel they can replicate the U17 World Cup success. Anything less than that would be a disappointment.” 

Both Dobrzanski and Blenman hail from Florida and were last stationed at US posts. Dobrzanski, a Miami native, was head coach at Johnson and Wales University while Blenman directed the South Georgia United football club. Both state they are eager to assist Cayman’s efforts. 

“The weather is good here and the flight is not bad,” Dobrzanski said. “It’s a great opportunity for me to get involved in Cayman football and move into the Caribbean Football Union with a chance to qualify for the World Cup, CONCACAF and so on.” 

“I live in North Florida, I worked in south Georgia and my background is English with my dad being Trinidadian,” Blenman said. “I know about the political side of things from working with English football associations. In Georgia we went from 100 kids to 800 kids in a year and the kids in the programme now are between eight and 18 years-old. That development is what I want to bring here. The progress here is good now as women’s football has grown significantly over the years. We see eight or nine clubs now but there could still be more athletes involved. It’s a number’s game, the more players you have the better chance you got of producing top talents.” 

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The U20 coaches, from left, Lee Blenman, Jeff Webb, Eric Dobrzanski, Thiago Cunha. – PHOTOS: MATTHEW YATES

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