Sporting Kansas City Academy Director Jon Parry has announced his retirement from soccer after nearly 20 years of fostering youth development in the sport and leading the Sporting Kansas City Academy since 2008.
Sporting Kansas City Manager and Sporting Director Peter Vermes will begin the search for the club’s new Academy Director, effective immediately.
Parry’s impressive soccer background includes almost two decades of coaching experience, working alongside Vermes as Sporting’s Academy Director while also serving as the Boys Director of Coaching at Sporting Blue Valley. Prior to joining Sporting Blue Valley, Parry was the head coach for the men’s and women’s soccer teams at the University of Saint Mary in Leavenworth, Kansas.
Under Parry’s guidance, Sporting has applied a holistic approach to player development over the last decade by cultivating a professional pathway from the Academy to Sporting KC II to the first team. With an experienced coaching and leadership staff, a dedicated player care staff, a large network of Academy Affiliates spanning the Midwest and continued investment in first-class facilities including Swope Soccer Village, the Sporting KC Academy has demonstrated commitment to the growth and improvement of all youth players within the club’s professional pathway.
Since Parry joined Sporting in 2008, the club has signed 19 Academy Products as MLS Homegrown Players—including 2021 MLS MVP finalist Daniel Salloi and United States Men’s National Team duo Gianluca Busio and Erik Palmer-Brown. Since 2016, nearly 30 additional Academy products have earned playing time for Sporting KC II in the USL Championship and MLS NEXT Pro.
Sporting and Parry have assembled a robust staff devoted to player development, appointing head coaches from the U-12 through U-19 age groups as well as goalkeeper coaches and fitness coaches. The Academy staff also has trainers and physicians as well as a team administrator, director of player care, nutritionist and scout. In 2018, the Sporting KC Academy received the inaugural MLS Academy of the Year award for its exemplary player development under Parry and its dedicated support staff.
In addition to his longstanding roles at Sporting KC and Sporting Blue Valley, Parry has served as an Executive Director of U.S. Youth Futsal. He holds his USSF A-Youth License, completed the U.S. Soccer Academy Directors leadership course, and received the prestigious Elite Formation Coaching License through the French Football Federation.
As a player, Parry enjoyed an eight-year career in professional indoor soccer, earning league all-star recognition four times. He also competed for the United States Futsal National Team at the 1996 World Championships and the 1998 Mundialito de Futsal Tournament in Brazil. Parry played college soccer at Rockhurst University in Kansas City and is the school’s second all-time leading scorer with 93 goals.