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US Development in Football/Soccer

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So the Bob Bradley thread has me off on another tangent and I'm fuming... :014:

Klinnsmann is a popular pick for US Manager but I'd prefer him to be in charge of the youth development program.  As a pundit in this year's WC coverage, he had a very poignant commentary on why football/soccer in the US is slow to develop and I thought he was spot on (SEE VIDEO).

What Is The Future For USA Soccer?

Let it load then start it at about the 1:30 or 2:00 mark.  McMananamanamanan has a small giggle b/c of the un-PC-ness of what Klinnsmann says but JK has a very good point:

I coach my 8 year old boy and struggled over the summer with whether or not to get him involved with Academy soccer.  I can't afford it but, if I could, I don't know that it would be worth it:
1) It's almost certain that he'd get burned out by the time he was 14-18.
2) Scholarship?  Are you kidding me, I could take that $3,000+ and put it into a fund over the next 10 years and we could hypothetically have more than $30,000 for college.
3) It's not just a commitment for the child/kid, it's a commitment for the entire family
4) and maybe most importantly, he's just a child/kid.  After reading an article about the Dutch system, they scout players and pick some of the better 8 year olds around to "train".  They don't pressurize their youth with winning.  They let them train and develop.  I believe it's not till they're 14 or 15 that they start putting them in groups of 11 and play in a competitive situation.

The US has football backwards.  It's a "rich" kids game here in the have to 'pay' to play a game that requires just a ball ???  Are you kidding me!

I agree that the cost of Soccer for kids is getting out of control.  I coached for a number of years at the select level and saw what kind of money the families had to pay.There is a group of players that grow up playing outside of this system and develop great skills. They are unfortunately ignored by US soccer for the most part.  They are the hispanic kids who play all over in place like California were I live, and I am sure Texas whear it looks like you live. These kids are the key to the future of American soccer if US soccer is willing to find them.

Another issue that US soccer has is a general lack of knowledge (duh) which leads to a general lack of awarness on how to teach the game properly....

I'm no expert.  In my efforts to Coach my son's team, I have seeked ideas from this MB, attended classes, searched for internet sites, read anything available from USSF or North Texas Coaching, and drawn upon my own experiences as a youth.  I have found one site in particular which has helped tremendously and I really like the ideas to their practice games...

This past Sunday, the boy & I went to the field and met another gentlemen & his son.  They told us they were getting ready for a 'pick-up game' and that guys from around the globe would be there to play.  They invited us but we declined (I've told them I'll meet up with them this coming Sunday).  We proceeded to do some work on our own.  When finished we took a moment to watch the game at hand (size up my competition).  As we were watching, I observed a youth team practicing.  They were doing the usual, dribbling around cones & a lot of standing in line...i.e. not doing anything, least of all kicking the ball.  To boot, the Coach had a Chelsea shirt on (no English accent, mind you) so it seems as if he at least followed the game or had an interest in it.  But football/soccer isn't played with cones and you don't learn anything by standing in line...

Yesterday, I had finished working with my U9 team and took an opportunity to watch another coach.  He had two lines of cones and the players had to dribble down and pass to each other...eventually taking a shot on goal.  Passes went astray, time was lost, a 2nd coach tried to apply some pressure, the other girls stood in line - not achieving anything but horse-play.

I can appreciate these coaches effort -- that's not my problem.  They're at least out there donating time and effort to help.  Our age division had a case where one team might have been disbanded if an adult didn't step up and take the role of Coach.

The 30 kids or so that these coaches are working with aren't getting the proper instruction - so for all the youth that play here in the States, most fall by the way side and I could guess that this just A reason.  In fact, it's the reason I fell out of soccer at 13 or 14.  In Middle School, the 'soccer coach' was an American Football coach and in all seriousness, I probably knew more about the game than he did.

Post 3 or a ??? post series --

Jurgen says it a bit oddly but he's absolutely right...

Soccer requires a ball, even less than what's required in basketball.  Like it or not, admit it or not, the predominant athlete in the US is a/the African-American.  In general, basketball is a popular sport amongst the African-American males that requires a ball & two goals perched 10 ft in the air, imagination, creativity, & a great amout of running.  Anybody notice a coincidence?  Besides the goals being 10ft in the air and the amount of players in play, the games get on a lot the same.

Some people get upset about the way animals are treated, some get upset about obesity in America or hunger in the World, some get upset about money or a lack there of, some get upset about moving away from London, some are upset about an inability to sell cd's, some are upset about other's being upset, some are upset about smilies on a MB...

Well I get upset about US youth development in the game of Soccer/Football.  Finn, you ever get that program up and running up there in NY, let me know and I'll jump on board to assist with something here in Dallas.

Thanks for reading/listening.

Great thread, Steve. Thanks for the intelligence.

When I coached in the US of A it was part of AYSO, and it was primarily for fun. I coached in San Antonio in the mid-70s [10-11 year olds] and in Maryland in the mid 80s [13-14 year olds]. I worked on basic skills and positioning, but mostly I wanted the kids to love the game the way I did, so mostly we just played. We finished 2nd in each league -- after majorly kicking the #1 team's ass in each instance -- and I hope the kids wound up with the same addiction I've had for a lifetime.


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