Led by former standout Shea Salinas, the San Jose Earthquakes are attempting to break the Guinness World Record for largest soccer lesson this Saturday at the Morgan Hill Outdoor Soccer Complex. Photo courtesy of the Quakes.

Former San Jose Earthquakes standout Shea Salinas has been retired for less than a year but hasn’t lost his competitive streak. 

That’s why he’s pumped to lead the Quakes’ attempt to break the official Guinness World Record title for the largest soccer lesson. The event, which takes place at the Morgan Hill Outdoor Complex on Saturday from 5-8pm, is part of their ongoing efforts to engage in a wide range of Northern California communities including the South Valley, Salinas and Monterey areas. 

The current Guinness record for largest soccer lesson is 835 participants which was done in Woodlea, Australia. 

Salinas, who has transitioned into San Jose’s front office as its Club Ambassador and Head of Youth Soccer Partnerships, is anticipating an exciting event and huge turnout.

“Ever since the task has been put in front of me, we’ve been doing a lot of work and a lot of planning into trying to break the world record of largest soccer lesson,” Salinas said. “We’re hoping to get over 1,000 [participants]. I’m excited for it; I’m a competitor so I do want us to break the record. Regardless, it’ll be a fun event, but it will be a more memorable experience if everyone can walk out of there saying, ‘Hey, I just broke a world record.’ I think people are going to come together and be a part of something fun and historic.”

Salinas, 36, will give a 30-40 minute lesson that will cover the fundamentals of dribbling, passing and shooting. Registration is free and open for everyone 5 and older. Participants will receive a Guinness World Record Attempt t-shirt, BodyArmor sports drink and an Adidas soccer ball (limited to the first 1,200 participants).

Food trucks and vendors will also be present. To register for the event, click here. Salinas is scheduled to start giving the lesson at 6 but is encouraging people to get to the event around 4-4:30 because there is a soccer tournament “and a bunch of things going on around the Complex” at the same time. 

Before the lesson starts, there will be a participant count after which two Guinness adjudicators will let Salinas and the Quakes staff know if they’ve broken the record. 

The event is part of the Quakes’ ongoing community outreach efforts as they focus on growing the sport at the grassroots level ahead of the club’s 50th anniversary in 2024 and the FIFA World Cup in 2026. 

Salinas spent 13 of his 15-year Major League Soccer career with the Quakes, retiring as the franchise’s all-time leader in assists after last season. In his current role, Salinas works closely with the club’s marketing and community relations departments on alumni relations, community events and camps and clinics. 

Additionally, he works with the Quakes Academy and group ticketing team to strengthen relationships and partnerships with local youth soccer clubs and organizations. Though pro athletes often have a tough time transitioning once their playing days are over, Salinas said for the most part his has gone well. 

“There have been some difficult moments, but transitioning to the front office I was able to help in a lot of different areas right away,” he said. “So I’ve found a lot of joy and purpose in that. And also, I’ve been able to dedicate more time and energy at home with the kids, which has been a real blessing.”

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Emanuel Lee primarily covers sports for Weeklys/NewSVMedia's Los Gatan publication. Twenty years of journalism experience and recipient of several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. Emanuel has run eight marathons with a PR of 3:13.40, counts himself as a true disciple of Jesus Christ and loves spending time with his wife and their two lovely daughters, Evangeline and Eliza.


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