Venice, California

Nick Santhiago

My journey as a soccer player started at Estadio from a young age. Passing the ball against the wall over 100 times to practice my first touch; running the stairs at muscle beach at night; juggling the ball the length of the boardwalk without dropping it. Those were my “practice sessions” after long days throughout middle and high school. It got me a soccer scholarship to play D2 soccer in San Francisco, though I would be recovering from reconstructive knee surgery after tearing my ACL and rupturing my MCL and meniscus, the entirety of my freshman year.

After two years of playing, with struggles on and off the field I came back to Venice. I was taking transfer courses and had two part time jobs, training on my own whenever I had time. At that point, there were only two consistent things for me soccer-wise: my ambition to go out and practice by myself, and Sunday pick up with VBFC. I was playing with VBFC almost every Sunday and was eventually invited to train with FC Golden State by one of the coaches I played against in a pick up game at Estadio.



On the morning of May 25th, after having trained and played with Golden State for about two months, I got a text at 10am in the middle of a training session with friends from Sunday pick up. At 10:30am I was at the UCLA club soccer field waiting for the arrival of the team we would be scrimmaging against. I saw Guillermo Ochoa walk off the bus, followed by Chicharito and others. Having the opportunity to be on the same field as, and playing against world class players like Hector Herrera and Marco Fabian was an incredible experience. I wasn’t nervous, I was just enjoying the moment; the opportunity that presented itself after 21 years of sacrifices for this sport. I felt inspired and motivated to take everything I could from the experience because I remembered all those nights where it was just me and my ball.


It’s humbling to think that my journey started at Estadio, and brought me to UCLA to play against the Mexican national team. More than anything, the whole experience serves as a reminder that every moment in life and soccer, good or bad, is just a step, not the whole staircase. "

- Nick Santhiago

Venice Beach FC  Footballer/ARTIST/COACH

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Nike LA x VBFC

At the Estadio

 photography by Matt Brush ( @brush )

photography by Matt Brush (@brush)

Last week, we put on a training session for Nike LA to showcase some of our local talent in their element at the court. Players were put to the test in a sharp technical session focusing on their touch under pressure. The mixed group worked a tough session for 90 minutes and the experience was captured by la based photographer matt brush (@brush). As the sun set, nike LA caught up with the kids to learn what it is about this game that drives them, why they enjoy life as a youth footballer, and learned a little bit about how playing on our court has helped push their game.


vbfc Youth: the players & dreamers

Dillon Chapman
BVB & Pulisic Visit LA

Borussia Dortmund   x  Los Angeles Football Club

May 22, 2018 

Banc of California Stadium.

 Squadra Venezia's Nick Santhiago, Dillon Chapman, & Tim Walsh with Christian Pulisic. 

Squadra Venezia's Nick Santhiago, Dillon Chapman, & Tim Walsh with Christian Pulisic. 


May 22, 2018 marked an exciting new chapter in LA soccer. The German side's post-season trip to Los angeles to play LAFC marks the first time The Banc of California stadium has hosted an international opponent. The atmosphere and energy within the stadium was unlike any other venue in America. There is something special and nostalgic about the newest & most expensive soccer specific stadium in America - something almost european. most of the credit must go to the LAFC supporters however, who were not only strong in numbers, but also sang through out the whole match. 

We had one of our very own on the sidelines,  Ben Green (@ben_green_) - local midfield hero and super talented photographer.  Check out the sights of the match below which ended 1-1, with two late second half goals. 

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Steve Nash X VBFC
 Some of LA's talented most talented youth. 
A few weeks back, we had the honor of working with one of the most talented athletes in the world, Steve Nash. Although Steve reached halL of fame status in the NBA, His passion for soccer and talent on the pitch is no secret. Not only did his brother play for Canada's National Team, Steve himself is an avid Tottenham fan, and he is part owner of famed Spanish professional club, RCD Mallorca. 
Venice Beach FC linked up with Kevin Lopes from (Classic ZZ10) and Steve Nash in a project to uncover some of LA's finest and most committed soccer players in the one of the nation's most dense talent pools. Players were scouted at different facilities, pickup games, and tournaments throughout Los Angeles, including the weekly showdown at the Estadio here in Venice. This was a invite only, free showcase for players to make a name for themselves. 
We saw four of our very own players picked, and 7 players in total who all have made their debuts  in Venice with the adult crowd. Zach May (SMU), Dylan Walsh (SMU), Kyle Roberts (unattached) , and Eric Ruiz (Venice High) were all in invited and had exceptional performances during the showcase. 

Photography by : Joe Walsh (@tmesisfc) 

tim walsh
NYC Champion's visit Dogtown

We had the pleasure of being able to work with Downtown United Soccer Club as they paid a visit to the famed Estadio de Dogtown while in town to compete for the Young Champions League National Championship. 

DUSC were put through a session at the beach & courts to get physically ready and go over tactics before their championship match the following day. After training, the boys had a little cool down, walking around tosee some local skaters and even met some local gals. It was an entirely new experience for the team, and I think it's safe to say that they enjoyed the experience. 

tim walsh
Pickup Vol. 01 : Seaside.

On Sunday Mar 18, 2018 Venice Beach Football Club & Turfmapp, along with Classic ZZ Academy, hosted some of LA's top players for a special day of pickup games.  we welcomed players of all ages youth to adult and packed the estadio with over 300+ visitors throughout the event. It was just another day of pickup in venice, with some of LA's best talent and the special guests who came to play and see the sights and sounds of Estadio De Dogtown. 


Let the kids play. 

The day started off by welcoming youth players from all over Los Angeles to battle it out on the court in non-stop winner-stays pickup. VBFC youth, Alessandro Del Piero Academy, and Classics ZZ Academy all brought out some exciting talent to play game after game of king-of-the-court. after the the youth, the adults hopped on, with current professionals julian büscher and andrae campbell showing up to participate in the adult's pickup game alongside the regular players and some new faces. we were very grateful for former la galaxy player bryan jordan, current la galaxy player baggio hudisic (LA GALAXY), Kevin Alston (OrLANDO CITY), Julian Büscher (LA GALAXY)  and Former premier league/USMNT player/ Venice local Stu Holden for coming through to show their support for the growth of pickup soccer in our community. 




 as usual, the adults game was highly competitive with locals, newcomers, current pros, and amateurs all dogfighting to hold court at the estadio. a special mention to sunday pickup regular and house of ink tattooist tohid safdari (@tohid_art) for his man of the match performance on the day. tohid managed to split his eye open in the process, but as he put it: "the people don't come to watch you take it easy." tohid's passion shone through on the day, and was emblematic of the spirit that has been driving the growth of this culture down at the beach. if nothing else, this event was able to showcase to people the raw passion of all the players who show up every week to the estadio to play this game.



a very special thanks to the masters behind the lens' on the day: josh rose (@joshsrose), tri Sanguanbun (@tri_11 / @turfmapp), trisikh Sanguanbun (@ts_xii / @turfmapp), michael tinley (@m2t5), Matt Krautstrunk (@mattb1ll), and all the other special guest photogs that made it out. we appreciate your support.

tim walsh
Futsal Club: Oakwood Girls Talent by Tmesis FC

As Futsal Club's first session of 2018 comes to a close, we look back here at some of the highlight shots of the girl's who came out to ball at Oakwood and consistently improved each week. These girls continued to set the standard for local youth futsal. Gallery by @tmesisfc.


futsal club session one

Girls futsal talent

Dillon Chapman
Ben Green Collection #1: Local Talent

Ben Green Collection .01

Local Talent

Ben Green is super talented local footballer on the court/field & also behind the lens. While home for spring break 2018, Ben came to Dogtown to document the special scenes building in Venice by the beach. Follow Ben green  @Ben_Green_ .

We saw another talented crop of players this weekend, as we were joined by some global names like Mo Ali, the famed viral trick shot player, as well as Galaxy new comer, Julian Buescher. Having previously spendt the last two years with DC United, when asked about VBFC pick up experience Julian said "this is great, it reminds me of home."  For Julian, home is Germany and they've won a lot of world cups. 

West side legends like Oliver Curry, Lucas Lezcano, and many others spent their Sunday soaking up the vibes by the beach. 

tim walsh
Pickup Gallery 3.11.18

Dogtown's Finest

Pick Up Gallery 3.11.18

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Oakwood Update: The kids are going to be alright.


VBFC Youth Update: 

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Dogtown Pick Up : Mason // The Culture Gallery #1.

Mason (@theculture) is a talented artist as well as a footballer. He has been playing and shooting us for the last few months. This is football. 

tim walsh
Venice Youth Academy : Futsal Club 2018

VBFC Youth 

Futsal Club Gallery

Futsal Club is a experience like no other. Week in and week out, some of the most talented youth players in Los Angeles come together to battle it out on the court.  Too often youth players are overwhelmed with information & tactics with not enough freedom to apply or figure those concepts out through various different scenarios & repetitions. Futsal Club is designed to allow creative, thoughtful, confident, players while in possession & under pressure. 


4 Players have made their debuts already at Estadio De Dogtown in one of the toughest mens games in Los Angeles, all 13 and below. 

Young Mens Group

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VBFC Community Youth Beach Session.

Sunset. Venice Beach : Feb. 13th

We held a free community session for the local youth players during a chilly night on the beach.  Captured by Joe Walsh (@tmesisfc), we were able to put in a good amount of work on the sand followed by a friendly match at an empty Estadio De Dogtown. This was a great session for the young players to train next to some of the older players side by side. 


Venice, CA. 

February 13, 2018. 

tim walsh
Dogtown Pick-Up : Josh Rose Gallery #1

Josh Rose Gallery #1 

Dogtown Pick - Up

venice local josh rose is your photographers favorite photographer. we were lucky enough to have him stop by the past few weekends and capture the estadio through his trademark b&w style. his unique and original creative direction has given the pickup game a new eye through which to see the game. josh brought his son noah to the game, who currently plays on the samohi varsity soccer team.

 Josh's fine art photography work has hung in galleries from Los Angeles to Berlin and he has been featured by the likes of Leica Cameras, Street Photography International and the Los Angeles Times. Josh is a regular and popular contributor on Instagram, a "Top Writer" on the subject of photography on Medium and is a featured photographer by AirBNB Experiences. to see more of josh's work, visit his website and follow him on instagram @joshsrose

tim walsh
Dogtown Pick Up : Joe Walsh Gallery

Joe Walsh Gallery Feb. 28th, 20018

Dogtown Pick-up

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Local Football : Linden DeGurian

By: Linden DeGurian

Local Football. 

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Dogtown Pick-Up Gallery: LInden DeGurian

at the slum by the sea, Estadio De Dogtown.

Sunday Pickup.


A few weeks ago we had a showcase of talent flock to venice to come play Sunday pick-up at estadio De Dogtown. There was a mix of ages, backgrounds, levels, and skills all coming together to play at the club by the sea. We had a PDL team from FC Golden State bring all the Brazilian boys to town which is always entertaining for the Dogtown Faithful. Outside of the well represented South Americans, local youth playerArguably the one of the best environments this country has seen in a local pick up game, definitely the realest,  was all captured through the lens of Linden DeGurian (@linden_degurian) 


Over 18 teams of 4 wait to get an opportunity to hold court.

There is no other game in the country like ours here in VENICE. 


Owen Hagen made his senior debut at the age of 12, while fellow youth product & already first team regular, Dylan Walsh had to leave the game early after a brutal body tackle by a former Belgian professional player 15 years his senior. Owen Joins a small group of youth players to play in the senior competition. Owen Hagen joins Dylan Walsh, Bruno Chapman, Kyle Roberts, & Roy Davidson Jr. to all make the jump. Players range from local amateurs/College/Academy youth players to professional/International players passing through or training in town. 

tim walsh
Born Mercurial: Gemma Ozturk

LA's own Gemma Ozturk, local VBFC youth player stars in the new global Nike Mercurial campaign. Gemma was picked alongside superstars Cristiano Ronaldo, Neymar, Kylian Mbape, Tobin Heath, Christen Press, and other to be the face of the Mercurial Boot set to be released. 

Gemma Ozturk warming up and demonstrating skills in Nike's latest Mercurials with a talented crew of Hayley Gonzalez, Olivia Moultrie, and Alfredo Sainz. 
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tim walsh