Mississippi Brilla

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Mississippi Brilla
Full name Mississippi Brilla Futbol Club
Nickname(s) Brilla
Founded 2006
Stadium Traceway Park
Clinton, Mississippi
Owner Rusty Bryant
Head Coach Mark McKeever
League Premier Development League
2016 3rd, Mid South Division
Playoffs: DNQ
Website Club home page
Current season

Mississippi Brilla is an amateur American soccer club based in Clinton, Mississippi, United States. Founded in 2006, the team plays in the Premier Development League (PDL), the fourth tier of the American Soccer Pyramid, in the Mid South Division of the Southern Conference. The team's colors are sky blue, navy and white.

Brilla is associated with Brilla Soccer Ministries, an organization which undertakes sports ministry to share Christianity through the sport. The club’s name is derived from the Spanish word for "shine", and references the biblical passage Matthew 5:16 which says "Therefore, let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven."

Although the club initially finished in the middle of the standings their first couple of years, Brilla has become one of the strongest PDL franchises in the Southeast on the pitch, winning their division regular season title in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2015. In 2011, the club had their best showing in the playoffs, reaching the Southern Conference finals.


Mississippi Brilla entered the PDL in 2007 to a great deal of fanfare, as the first soccer franchise in Mississippi since the demise of the Jackson Chargers in 1999. Under head coach Dave Dixon, Brilla tied their first game 1-1 at home to New Orleans Shell Shockers in front of over 1,000 fans (with the honor of the first goal in franchise history going to James Gledhill), and although the average attendance remained high throughout the season, the on-field results were not quite as impressive. Brilla won their first game next time out, 1-0 over DFW Tornados, but then failed to register a victory in their next four games. In the end, too many ties caused Brilla's downfall - 5 on the season - and despite some impressive results, including a 5-1 hammering of Baton Rouge Capitals in June and 5-0 demolition of Nashville Metros in July, it was not quite enough to make the playoffs, and they eventually finished their freshman year fourth behind divisional (and eventual national) champions Laredo Heat. James Gledhill was the team's top scorer, with six goals, while Chris Rash and Tripp Harkins leds the assists stats with three apiece.

Brilla's second season in the PDL was pretty much on an equal footing with their first. With new head coach Steve DeCou at the helm, attendances remained high, often topping 900 fans per game, and the team enjoyed a number of exciting victories, including a hard-fought 2-0 win over the eventual divisional champions Austin Aztex U23, a 2-1 come-from-behind victory over New Orleans Shell Shockers in mid-June, and a spectacular 6-2 final day victory at home against Houston Leones in which Tripp Harkins scored a brace. As was the case in 2007, however, Brilla's downfall was a lack of consistency, and their inability to string a series of results together to gain momentum: their longest streak was a 5-game run in late June and early which included three wins and two ties, including the aforementioned victory over New Orleans. Mississippi ended the season in 4th place in the Mid South Division, just four points out of the playoffs, and with plenty to build on in 2009. Phillip Buffington was the team's most prolific goalscorer, with 8 for the season.

2009 saw Brilla's most successful start in team history. Brilla qualified for the U.S. Open Cup for the first time in franchise history by going undefeated in their first four games, winning three and drawing one. Debola Ogunseye is currently the team's leading scorer with 4 goals.

Players & Staff[edit]

Current roster[edit]

As of July, 2015.[1]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
0 United States GK Josh Christensen
0 United States GK Josh Poissant
1 Scotland GK Jordan Bell
2 England DF Macauley King
3 United States FW Stephen Roberson
4 England MF Tom Gavin
5 England DF Michael Gonzalo
5 United States MF Zahir Hassan
6 United States DF Dustin Ashley
7 Scotland DF John Calderwood
8 United States MF James Gulley
9 United States FW Kellen Gulley
10 Spain MF Sergio Royo
11 United States FW Logan Mendez
No. Position Player
12 Colombia MF Carlos Garces
12 England FW Peter Okechukwu
14 Chile MF Ignacio Flores
15 England DF Paul Weldon
16 Brazil MF Lucas Almeida
16 Serbia MF Perica Obradocic
17 Brazil MF Eduardo Cruz
18 United States DF Michael Durr
19 Chile FW Manuel Saez
19 Jamaica FW Noel Mais
20 United States DF Joshua Barrera
21 England MF Louis Tambini
21 United States FW Phillip Buffington
23 United States MF Brian Vasquez

Head Coach[edit]

  • Scotland Mark McKeever (2015-)

Notable Players[edit]

This list of notable players comprises players who have gone on to play professional soccer after playing for the team in the Premier Development League, or those who previously played professionally before joining the team.

Former Head Coaches[edit]

  • United States Drew Courtney (2013-2014)
  • United States Dave Dixon (2007, 2009–2012)
  • United States Steve DeCou (2008)


Year Division League Regular Season Playoffs US Open Cup Avg. Attendance
2007 4 USL PDL 4th, Mid South Did not qualify Did not qualify 1,109 (6th in PDL)
2008 4 USL PDL 4th, Mid South Did not qualify Did not qualify 935
2009 4 USL PDL 1st, Southeast Divisional Finals 1st Round[3] 852
2010 4 USL PDL 1st, Southeast Conference Semifinals Did not qualify 671
2011 4 USL PDL 1st, Southeast Conference Finals Did not qualify 732
2012 4 USL PDL 4th, Southeast Did not qualify 1st Round[4] 502
2013 4 USL PDL 5th, Southeast Did not qualify Did not qualify 564
2014 4 USL PDL 4th, Mid South Did not qualify Did not qualify 597
2015 4 USL PDL 1st, Mid South Conference Semifinals Did not qualify 709
2016 4 USL PDL 3rd, Mid South Did not qualify 2nd Round


  • USL PDL Southeast Division Champions 2009
  • USL PDL Southeast Division Champions 2010
  • USL PDL Southeast Division Champions 2011
  • USL PDL Mid South Division Champions 2015



The Mississippi Brilla official supporter club is The Blue Battalion,[5] founded in 2015. The Battalion tailgate before each home game and bring passion and noise to match days. Each home game the group selects their player of the game, who receives a gift card and signs and dates the large Blue Battalion flag.


Each Mississippi Brilla home game is broadcast live on their YouTube channel and also kept there for on demand viewing.[6]


External links[edit]