To get to know them better and go deep in the roots of NJ Alliance, we shared some thoughts with Edgar Guardia, president of the Organization:
So Edgar, How did you find interest in Soccer? Let us know some things about the team's story.
As first generation Peruvian-American, el futbol was a part of our daily life. I grew up playing in local leagues and in high school. The club began as a way for me to give back to the local community, recognizing the limitations placed on athletes by the high cost of registrations, camps, and obtaining decent training. I was one of those kids that at various times could not afford to join some of the more elite programs my friends were participating in. Sometimes my parents had to choose between registration fees and work, or I needed to work to help make ends meet. So, when I was in the position to do so financially I was set on fixing this broken “pay-to-play” system. I founded this Club as a nonprofit with the goal of establishing a program whose mission is to create a path for local talent without financial restriction. If you work hard enough you should have a fair chance at playing the sport you love.
I started my own business in 2012 called Unified Home Systems which is the sponsor of the club. Our club New Jersey Alliance Futbol Club boasts two men’s teams playing in the United Premier Soccer League’s (UPSL) Premier and Division 1 league and a women’s team that just finished their season in the New York Metropolitan Women’s Soccer League (NYMWL) and also plays in the Women’s Premier Soccer League (WPSL).
Let us know a little about the organization's projects.
At a macro level, we are looking to move one or two of our teams up in their respective leagues. We also look forward to expanding our sponsorship reach. To date, we have primarily relied on the sponsorship of my business Unified Home Systems, and a few in-kind sponsors. But in 2023 our aim will be to grow our network and invite partnerships and alliances for our growing club. We strongly believe that there is a lot of opportunity for visibility and growth for sponsors. Relatedly, in our 3-5 year plan we are looking to become owners of a training facility, that’s very exciting and will help us expand our ability to promote and serve the community, something that remains a great part of our mission.
What do you want to bring to the soccer table?
Change. Change in how the soccer system in the United States works. Change in the way the pyramid is viewed here in the US. We are also looking to promote as much local talent as possible. We believe there are many undiscovered talents locally and across the country.
What's your relationship with the community?
We are grateful for the opportunity to help run clinics and regularly assist local recreational programs with coaching and refereeing.
How do you see Diaza fits in with your near future development?
Diego Hurtado, founder of Diaza Football, is a valuable resource and ally. It gives me great confidence to know he has a real understanding of the industry and has seen the soccer landscape in the United States. Being professionally outfitted in quality gear is a huge plus. Diaza is also involved in community projects, which aligns with our own mission statement of giving back. We look forward to working with DIAZA on many projects. Ultimately, we aspire to be a professional-level soccer club born and raised in New Jersey and have DIAZA be one of our strongest allies. Resounding words to confirm that is always #BetterTogether.