Soccer Dreams: Playing the Seattle Sounders FC Way

Summary: A free verse illustrated chapter book about a young boy from Kenya who moves to Seattle and helps his coach build a winning soccer team, with inspiring strategy tips and profiles of the MLS Seattle Sounders team. This licensed product of the MLS includes full-color photos of Sounders FC players along with black and white illustrations of the story. 


Soccer dreams by Clare Meeker
Book Name: 
Soccer Dreams, Playing the Sounders FC Way

Target Age Group: 7-12

Publisher: Creating One LLC

ISBN: 978-0-615-43236-6

Where to buy: At your local bookstore or online at, Amazon, or B/, SoundersFC Pro-Shop

Purchase a signed Book from Clare

March 11, 2011 Shelf Talk Awareness Book Trailer of the Day for Soccer Dreams: Playing the Seattle Sounders FC Way

View the Soccer Dreams Book Trailer HERE!

To learn about my in-school field trip on team building using Soccer Dreams, click here

"Well-written and touching, Soccer Dreams could serve as a starting point for a conversation about some serious real-world issues, or simply a fun way to share a love of soccer. Either way, it’s a winner." Chanti Reviews

“Young readers can immerse themselves in the story of Todo, a 10-year-old boy who emigrates from Kenya to Seattle, where playing on a youth soccer team opens the door to friendship and acceptance. Interspersed throughout this fictional story are photos and profiles of Seattle Sounders FC team members from all over the world who have made their own childhood soccer dreams come true.”  Alaska Airlines Magazine, April 2011

“This book, beautifully produced with full-color  photos and original illustrations, is certain to delight young athletes and soccer fans- as well as the grown-ups who read it with them.”  Seattle blog/ thewritersblock, April 7, 2011
“An intriguing hybrid of a story- the black and white drawings illustrate Kenyan refugee Todo’s free verse telling of his love for soccer and his life in Seattle. Todo’s story is universal and will appeal to soccer-loving elementary and middle school kids- a large audience!”       Whitman Library Blog/Seattle Schools,  September, 2011



Chapter 1: Soccer Is the World’s Sport
Seattle Sounder Steve Zakuani
charged down the field,
outrunning the midfielders
with his long strides
and fast dribbling.

Weaving around the other team’s defenders,
he had one opponent left to face -
the goalkeeper. Zakuani faked to the right
and the goalkeeper pounced.

Then he quickly moved left
and blasted the ball
into the back of the net.

When I watch the Seattle Sounders play soccer,
I dream that I’m part of the team.
The players come from all over the world,
including Africa, where I was born.

My name is Todo.
I’m small for my age,
but I can run fast. In my neighborhood in Nairobi, Kenya,
we played soccer every day after school
in an empty lot behind our apartment.
We used our shirts to mark the goal,
and a ball made of plastic bags
wrapped with nylon rope."

-Profile of Sounders FC Defender Patrick Ianni

Defender Patrick Ianni’s Bicycle Kick

Defender Patrick Ianni’s Bicycle KickOn July 11, 2009, Patrick Ianni scored the game-winning goal against his former team, the MLS Houston Dynamos, using a bicycle kick.

“I remember trying the bicycle kick for fun when I was 8 years old at this soccer camp. The more you practice it, the easier it gets.”

Patrick’s older brother who played soccer for UCLA got him started playing soccer. “I played other sports, but watching my brother succeed steered me in the direction of soccer.”

Favorite Warm ups: jumping up for headers and directing the ball to the players’ hands. Playing soccer tennis before a game. “We string tape between two chairs. Roger hits the ball up to me and sometimes I do bicycle kicks to get it over.”

Sounders FC Tip: “You have to have a competitive drive, and a balance of intelligence and intensity to succeed.”