Single-Digit Soccer: The bond of a rec team

My U12 House league team finished its season on a chilly, windy Saturday morning, completing a four-team mini-tournament with a win on penalty kicks. After the game, the parents gave me a photo book. The joy of the season was on every page. Each player had a couple of pictures and a comment or two about the season and the team. One player even had a message for the people who hand out coaching licenses, telling them they should just hand me whatever license I was seeking. (I’m halfway to the D.) Some teams in our league have been together, more … Continue reading Single-Digit Soccer: The bond of a rec team

Single-Digit Soccer: The challenge of finding a properly challenging level

The book Coaching Outside the Box: Changing the Mindset in Youth Soccer has a chapter with best-case and worst-case scenarios for moving up and facing a tougher level of competition. The best case is a nice tale of a U11 boy named Liam, technically proficient but small in stature, who is invited to play up one age group for one or two games by a caring coach who lays out the pros and cons, then makes it his decision. The worst case is a depressing story of a U9 girl named Sally, who is on a low-level travel team but interested in doing … Continue reading Single-Digit Soccer: The challenge of finding a properly challenging level

Questions to ask after E:60 turf story

Let me toss in some disclaimers at the beginning: I worry about everything. I’m a big fan of Julie Foudy, and I’m glad ESPN has put her to work in ways that take advantage of her soccer expertise, her advocacy, and her inquisitive nature. I’m not a big fan of the E:60 production style. The fake newsroom meeting to introduce each segment. The ominous music. TV is a difficult medium for investigative journalism. You can’t broadcast a spreadsheet. Compare the E:60 piece on artificial turf with Bloody Elbow’s investigation of UFC finances. Which one is more in depth? So my biggest disappointments with the E:60 story are these: … Continue reading Questions to ask after E:60 turf story