FRESNO, Calif. – Head Coach Adam Smith has welcomed two new members to his coaching staff as the club prepares for the 2019 USL Championship season, the club announced today. Joining the staff are former Fresno Pacific University men’s soccer player Ivan Mirkovic and Leigh Veidman. Mirkovic will be a player/coach for the Foxes, while also assisting as head of analysis while Veidman will serve as assistant coach and head of performance.
“Building a strong, smart and supportive staff is paramount to our success, and I am excited to bring in two individuals who bring all of those traits in Leigh and Ivan,” Smith said. “I’m already impressed with the work we’ve completed to prepare for the upcoming season and I’m looking forward to the things we can achieve together.”
Ivan Mirkovic with Sacramento Republic FC / Photo by Steven Christy
Mirkovic, 31, returns to Fresno after spending several seasons in the USL having played with Sacramento Republic, Orange County SC, Saint Louis FC and most recently, Tulsa Roughnecks FC. The midfielder has recorded 95 appearances in the USL over five years and was a member of Republic FC’s championship team in 2014. A native of Serbia, soccer brought Mirkovic to the states where he played collegiately at Oxnard College and later Fresno Pacific University. As a Sunbird, Mirkovic was named NCCAA Tournament Defensive MVP and PacWest Defender of the Year. He also played in the Premier Development League for the Fresno Fuego and later the Ventura County Fusion. Mirkovic is the third former Fresno Pacific player to join the Foxes, alongside Renato Bustamante and Milton Blanco.
Leigh Veidman, Fresno FC's new assistant coach and head of performance.
Veidman, 30, joins the Foxes after spending the last two years with FC Boulder, where he served as the Director of Athletic Performance. He also was an assistant coach for two years at Midland University in Nebraska where he helped lead the Warriors to the 2017 National Tournament. Veidman was also an assistant coach for the Des Moines Menace (Premier Development League) for two seasons, helping coach the team to a 22W-4L-3D record that including a place in the 2017 USL PDL Playoffs and a Heartland Division title.
A native of Liverpool, England. Veidman played for the youth academies at both Liverpool Football Club and Everton Football Club. In 2008, Veidman moved to the United States and played collegiately for Iowa Western Community College and later the University of Texas at Brownsville. He is a seven-year veteran of the PDL, having played with the Toronto Lynx, Des Moines Menace and FC Boulder. Veidman earned his Master’s degree in Leadership and Adult Organizational Learning and a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science. He currently holds his USSF “B” License and is working towards his USSF “A” License and his certificate as a Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS).