Stanford University is one of the rare colleges in the country that is highly regarded athletically and academically. RGVFC’s new goalkeeper Nico Corti excelled in both categories in his time there. The Cardinal men’s soccer team has won the last three NCAA championships. Nico Corti was a goalkeeper on all three of those teams, earning College Cup All-Tournament team in 2017. He didn’t allow a goal in the five postseason matches, only the sixth goalkeeper ever to do so. His senior year was the best statistical goalkeeping season in school history.
What allowed Corti to have such a successful season between the sticks? “I’d say discipline and persistence,” he answers. “I didn’t get any playing time early in my college career, so I had to make sure I was extremely disciplined in my approach to training and competing everyday, so that I was ready when my opportunity finally came.”
Off the pitch, the political science major graduated with a 3.53 GPA at the fifth best national university in the United States, according to US News. Corti explains, “I’ve always taken pride in my academic work. At times, it’s not as much fun as playing soccer. But, I still enjoyed a lot of the topics I was learning about in my classes and when you’re surrounded by ridiculously accomplished classmates, it pushes you to be a better student.”
His learning has continued this preseason. After signing with RGVFC, he had the opportunity to train with the Houston Dynamo. That allowed him a chance to absorb knowledge from veterans Chris Seitz and Joe Willis. “It was a phenomenal experience. Those guys were incredibly welcoming and gave me some really great advice every day,” Corti says. “On top of all the technical tips they gave me, I’d say a big thing I realized from training with them is the importance of calmness. They are both incredibly calm and composed when they’re in goal and that allows them to make the right decisions very quickly and that’s definitely something I will continue to work on moving forward.”
His journey to South Texas actually began across the Atlantic. Corti was born in Belgium, but only lived there one year before moving to his father’s native France. His family would eventually move to California when he was 10 years old. For those wondering, he speaks fluent English and French.
The bi-lingual shot stopper now finds himself in a primarily Spanish speaking setting. “I’m extremely excited to be down here in the Valley,” Corti says. “I’ve only been down here for a couple of days, but I’m already excited about the group of players we have here and the quality of the Toros’ staff.” He jokes, “That being said, I haven’t experienced that Rio Grande Valley summer heat yet so maybe ask me again in a couple months.”