How it all started
Total Elite Soccer Training was an idea that became a reality in October of 2017. Founder and coach, Sanel Dzafic, you can just call him Sonny, arrived to the US from Europe at the age of 19. As a young kid growing up in Bosnia, he spent all of his free time training on his own in order to improve as a player, there simply wasn’t too many other options and training with a personal coach was a long shot. When his time as a player came to an end, he knew he had to give back. He wanted to give something to soccer players in the State of Iowa that he never had growing up and that’s when Total Elite Soccer Training was born. Coach Nikola Petrovic or Coach Nico, joined the team in the summer of 2021. Together, Sonny and Nico focus on developing players in the State of Iowa, aged 8-25, into elite players through customized personal training. They believe that each player has a next level and that Total Elite is the place to get them there.
Sanel "Sonny" Dzafic
Soccer has always been part of coach Sonny's life. Coach Sonny loves playing as well as coaching. While living in Germany, he played in an amateur league as a junior. After moving to the US, coach Sonny played for Roosevelt High School for 1 year where he received a varsity letter. After that, he received a full scholarship at Grand View University for 4 years and played semi pro for the Des Moines Menace. Coach Sonny has coached numerous soccer clinics and summer soccer camps with kids ranging from 6-18 years old while attending Grand View University, as well as 2 years as a volunteer head coach for U of Iowa Men's Soccer Club. Coach Sonny enjoys passing on the knowledge he has gained to the next generation of soccer players and watch them getting better every day. Currently holding National F coaching license.
NIKOLA "NICO" PETROVIC
Student Volunteer Coach
Coach Nico was born and raised in Belgrade, Serbia. At age 7, he started playing soccer and followed his dads footsteps. That's when he began his journey playing for academy team FK Rad. As a high school player he played for FK Sidnjelic before coming to United States. Where he attended and played at Hawkeye Community College as a captain and was first ever to be named on the Frist Team All Conference as a Freshman. After finishing at Hawkeye Community College he transferred to and played for Mount Mercy University. Post college he was playing semi-pro soccer for Cedar Rapids Inferno and is currently playing for Iowa Raptors. Coach Nico is getting his Master's degree while assistant coaching for Mount Mercy Men's soccer program. He has learned a lot throughout his playing and coaching experience and hopes to pass on the knowledge of the game to other's the best he can.