There is no question that Tyler Madeira has the fire burning inside of him to push and lead the Muhlenberg men’s soccer team to future success. However, at only age 24, an important method of doing so may be found not only in him as a coach, but also in his relationship with his players. Madeira sustains a high level of respectability with his players while simultaneously being someone they can relate to.
When he found out the full-time assistant coaching position for the Muhlenberg men’s soccer team had opened up, Madeira knew it was the opportunity he had been craving since his time playing at the collegiate level at Bloomsburg University had ended.
“I’m from the area,” he said. “I knew [Head] Coach Topping. He actually recruited me to join the staff, and I was still open to being around the game.” After taking one step into the real world, Madeira knew the beautiful game was something he could not live without.
Even though Madeira has been playing soccer his whole life, this was his first official, full-time coaching job. “I loved being part of a collegiate team,” he said. “I have always found myself to be a leader on the field and now being a different type of leader off the field is something that I am coming to love.”
There is a fine line of professionalism Madeira needs to maintain between himself and the players, though. At times, that maintenance can come across as stern and harsh. Still, the relationship he has formed with individual players using his ability to empathize with what they may be going through is crucial to team success and connection.
“As I mentioned before, taking a role and leadership have been ways to distinguish myself as the coach,” he said. “Getting your point across, pulling guys aside during training, making that relationship on the field makes the transition off the field easier.”
“Part of my role too, though, is being there for the guys to talk about other things aside from soccer,” Madeira continues. “While understanding my role as a younger person, I can connect with this age group well. I have been doing academic meetings with guys to help them stay on top of things… or any other issues they may be having… [this] is one way I can connect with them as well.”
It is safe to say that Madeira has settled in well with his new squad. Within a year, he has managed to build relationships with each player and has done wonders for the Mules. His ability to lead, his commitment to the team, and the mindset he carries with him are contagious. “Of course, a championship would be awesome,” says Madeira. “But also to get better as a coach and a person while taking pride in learning is something I hope to accomplish going forward.”