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Bob Machin, retiring after almost 60 years, ‘proud’ of family’s role in growing Kingston soccer

Click to play video: 'Kingston soccer will miss Bob Machin who is retiring after 57 years.' Kingston soccer will miss Bob Machin who is retiring after 57 years.
He was involved with Kingston soccer for almost 60 years as a player, manager and administrator, and Bob Machin says the time is right to hang up the cleats – Sep 17, 2020

For almost six decades, Bob Machin has been a fixture on the soccer landscape in the Limestone City.

Machin was a player, coach, manager and administrator for 57 years.

“I’ve put my heart and soul into the game and now it’s time to retire,” said the 64-year-old Kingston native.

“It’s been rewarding, and at times frustrating, but I always tried to do my best for my teams and the leagues I was associated with.”

Machin’s background in soccer is genetic.

Read more: Kingston Clippers score a big win over South Ottawa in women’s soccer

His father Bob Machin Sr. is a member of the Kingston and District Sports Hall of Fame. He was an all-star player in his day and was the driving force behind the building of Caton’s Field, a popular soccer destination on Bagot Street.

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His brother John was a long time executive member of the Pittsburgh Township Minor Soccer Association, now known as Kingston United. A soccer complex in the city’s east end is named after John Machin.

“I am proud of what my family has done for soccer in Kingston,” said Machin.

“My dad and my brother did a lot for the game, and I feel I have as well.”

Machin is the past president of the Kingston Clippers Association. He and Sean O’Brien were largely responsible for building a new home for the local club.

“That was my biggest achievement,” said Machin.

“In 2019, we finally got the Alliance indoor facility up and running for the kids to enjoy.”

On the field, Machin started the Kingston Premier Women’s soccer club in 1989. He has served as the team’s manager for the past 30 years. The 2020 summer campaign was cancelled because of COVID-19.

Read more: With the 2026 World Cup on the horizon, the sky’s the limit for Canadian soccer

“It was a labour of love,” said Machin.

“There was a lot of travelling to Toronto and Ottawa but it was all worth it.”

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Machin is going out a winner. The 2019 Clippers won the Ottawa-Carleton Soccer League championship for the first time in the team’s history. He said it was the best team he’s ever managed.

“I’ve been involved in soccer for almost 60 years. It’s time for me to pass the torch to somebody else. I am retiring from the competitive game but still plan to manage a girls’ team in the Kingston Recreational League.”

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