Growing up in North West England, Richard was surrounded by soccer from an early age. His playing career began during his early years at school, and by the age of 10, he was invited to join the Professional Youth Academy at Blackpool Football Club, located in his hometown. At the age of 16, Blackpool FC offered him a two year YTS contract, and he graduated high school and signed with the club, training and playing full-time. During this period, Richard played with and against some of England’s best upcoming players, while facing the youth teams of clubs such as Manchester United, Manchester City, and Liverpool FC.
After spending a total of 8 years at Blackpool FC, Richard went on to play for Fleetwood Town FC and Kendal Town FC. He also began gaining experience working with young players after completing his UEFA Coaching license through the PFA (Professional Footballer’s Association). He was also invited by Blackpool FC’s Youth Academy Director to work with the U9’s and was presented with the opportunity to travel to the U.S. to coach. After enjoying his experiences in America, Richard decided to pursue college playing opportunities in the U.S., and was offered a number of full Scholarships at various colleges throughout the country. Richard decided upon Syracuse, NY where he played for Bryant and Stratton and LeMoyne College. During this time, he captained his side to a NJCAA Division I National Championship, he was named All-American, and awarded the MVP three consecutive years.
After graduating with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Information Systems, Richard continued his playing career; signing professionally with the Syracuse Silver Knights of the Major Indoor Soccer League. He also spent the majority of his time furthering his education in youth soccer development. In 2003, he began developing ideas and training curriculums with his good friend, colleague, and Invictus FC Director of Education, Paul Mairs, and together they produced the bestselling book ‘Coaching Outside the Box: Changing the Mindset in Youth Soccer’ in 2012.
In addition to coaching at the youth level, Richard has also had a very successful college coaching career. In 2005, he helped guide LeMoyne College Men’s Soccer to their first-ever Northeast-10 Conference Championship. He led Cazenovia College Men’s Soccer team undefeated during his tenure, and guided Adirondack College Men’s Soccer to their first Conference Championship in the history of the program.
Richard, and his colleague, Paul Mairs, have spent the last decade traveling and sharing insights with various clubs and organizations throughout North-America and Europe. Their coaching curriculums have helped hundreds of players reach the college and professional levels of the game. In addition to commitments inside youth development, Richard continues to work as a soccer analyst and TV commentator, which has seen him work with ESPN, and within the ACC for Men’s and Women’s Division I College Soccer.