On Sunday, doolsta of the Philadelphia Union took home the trophy and the $5,000 prize at eMLS League Series Two in Frisco at the National Soccer Hall of Fame. doolsta was able to defend his title from eMLS League Series One and has now accumulated $10,000 and two trophies from his two first-place finishes this year.
Unlike League Series One where doolsta dominated most of the day, in League Series Two the reigning champion’s journey to the final was a struggle. In the regular season portion, doolsta finished with a record of 7-3-1 which was enough to top the group because of how competitive the Eastern Conference was.
In the quarterfinals, doolsta faced FCC Fiddle of FC Cincinnati, who he lost to earlier in the day, and managed to scrap out a 1-0 victory. In the semifinals, it was No. 2 seed PhilB94 of Toronto FC, another player who he’d lost to earlier in the day. doolsta managed an epic win in the first penalty shootout of the eMLS season before edging RCTID_Thiago of the Portland Timbers, 2-1, in the final.
After the trophy was raised I had a few moments to sit down with the back-to-back eMLS League Series champion as he broke things down.
Back-to-back championships, what does it mean to raise another trophy?
doolsta: “To be honest, to win one is just amazing. To win two, I didn’t expect to win today to be honest. It’s a great feeling, the eMLS is a great league and to be top of the league twice is a good feeling.”
You lost to PhilB94 in the regular season and beat him in the semifinals, what adjustments did you make?
doolsta: “Yeah, he did beat me earlier 2-1, but it’s something about playing up on the stage I think I play better. I didn’t really change to much, but my focus was just there and I had a great game.”
What were your keys to winning this tournament?
Doolsta: “I play the 4-1-2-1-2 [formation] and I’ve played it for awhile. I like to pass with my two strikers and central attacking midfielder, bring my three center midfielders up, and I like to posses around the outside of the box looking for an opportunity so that’s basically how I play.”
Talk me thru your team, which players were working best for you today?
doolsta: “Obviously at the back Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane were very solid, Ray Gaddis did a job for me at left back, Alejandro Bedoya was really working well. I think he scored like five goals for me. The whole team overall though was just great.”
You’re 18, a senior in high school, what do your friends back at school think about your success in FIFA?
doolsta: “When I won the first one everyone was coming up to me in school congratulating me. I can’t wait to hear what they say when they find out I won a second.”
What do you have to say to the Union fans back at home who tuned in?
doolsta: “Thank you to all the Union fans for the support, I was on Twitter today, everyone was giving me great support and yeah, brining back another trophy to Philly.”