For our latest blog interview, we got the opportunity to chop it up with division one goalkeeper Carter Nunnery. The former Charlotte FC academy goalkeeper shares a ton of great insight on his journey to the top level of college soccer and gives some great tips on how to follow in his footsteps. Read it all below!
1. When did you first start playing goalkeeper full time? What made you choose the position?
I started playing goalkeeper full time when I was 10 or 11. At first, I didn’t really choose to play goalkeeper; it was just one of those things where every kid plays every position when you’re young. After a while I was just always in goal and I became pretty good at the position. At around the same time, I began to really enjoy playing the position. 2. What was it like winning the US Club Soccer national championship in 2019? How did you prepare for that tournament?
It was a really cool experience, our team had been to this tournament 3 years in row. The first year we didn’t make it out of the group stage, the second year we got to the final and lost in the second half of extra time, and finally the third year we won the final. The win made the previous years worth it. There wasn’t any specific preparation other than training as much as I could. Then when it was time to play I knew I could be confident in my preparation.
3. You've played in some pretty prestigious youth soccer tournaments, including the SuperCup in Northern Ireland and the Dallas Cup. What was the competition level like at those tournaments and what were some of your biggest takeaways after those experiences?
I have been blessed to play against some of the best academies in the country and across the world in SuperCup and the Dallas Cup. The level was as high as you would get in youth soccer. Playing against these teams made me understand that the difference between the levels was the consistency. The good teams had players who would do the right thing every couple of attempts. The great teams had the players who knew what to do every time and were able to execute. 4. You spent time in the Charlotte FC academy when it was first getting started. How was your experience there and how do you think it prepared you for the next level?
My experience with Charlotte FC academy was great. I was fortunate enough to be able to play in Bank of America stadium a couple times, and played against high-level teams, while receiving high-level training. All of this helped me to build confidence in myself knowing that I could compete with people across the country and from some of the greatest clubs across America. Being with Charlotte also taught me to strive to be as consistent as possible and that’s what would take me to the next level.
5. What was your college recruiting process like? Was it a long process or did you make your decision pretty quickly?
The college recruiting process was a weird one for me because of Covid-19. The process was delayed due to Covid. When it came time to narrow down my list of schools I was able to visit a few of the schools and I didn’t rush my decision. I prayed about my decision and I told the coaches I would need time and they respected that and that gave me confidence that Furman was the right fit for me.
6. You ultimately ended up at Furman University. Was college soccer always the route you wanted to take? Why did you end up choosing Furman?
College was the most realistic and supported decision by my family and mentors. Obviously everyone wants to go pro right away but I knew that the best thing for me was to go somewhere I could play and develop. Furman University was the most fitting school and I knew I could develop as a player there. 7. Describe your transition to college soccer. What have been some of the toughest challenges you've faced so far?
The transition into college soccer was a good one for me because I red-shirted my freshman year, but was able to travel to almost every game. Seeing the games and understanding the speed of everything was important for me. Being able to train for a year was good for me to really focus on my weaknesses.
8. What advice would you share with goalkeepers looking to reach the collegiate level?
One of the biggest things I would say is, be consistent. A lot of people are good at goalkeeping and can make good saves but being able to do the simple things right and then make the big saves is what will get you the farthest. Also, enjoy everything. The higher level you go, the more pressure will be put on you but you have to remember it is a game and mistakes can happen. Most importantly, make sure whatever you do that it makes you happy. 9. What are your long-term aspirations in the sport?
I would love to play professional soccer and then become a goalkeeper coach at a high level, but I will do whatever God’s plan is for me. 10. Who do you think is the best goalkeeper in the world?
Emi Martinez. He has been the most consistent goalkeeper in the world since Leno got hurt and he started at Arsenal. His ability and goalkeeper consistency was finally put on the world’s biggest stage, the World Cup.