On The Pitch

Thoughts on Youth Soccer from a Soccer Dad, Fan, Coach and Administrator

Entries for September, 2007

Puppies On The Pitch

My U11 Girls picked up their first point this past weekend (yay!), but by far the funniest moment of the game was when a dog decided to audition as ‘Air Bud’ during the match.

Football by Electric Light – circa 1885

Tweet Like many, I cheered the NY Times when they finally euthanized Times Select and let poor/cheap people like me back into the opinion columns. But they also opened up their archives going back over a century. What a fantastic move – even if they were motivated more by online ad $$$$ than the public […]

At Some Point You Just Have To Be Honest

Player feedback can be a touchy subject with parents and a difficult thing for coaches. As a coach, you want to be as supportive of your kids as you can. However, at some point (and age), you just have to be honest with your kids and that honesty usually isn’t good news. When exactly is the right age and situation to simply tell your kids they just didn’t play well, followed up with how they can get better?

Why Do You Coach?

I often get asked why I chose to coach girls. On my Rec teams, which were all coed, I’ve found the girls the most challenging to coach. Yes, this is generalizing, but I find it mostly true. You give a boy a ball and a target and tell him to do whatever it takes to get the ball to the target – whoosh – there they go. With girls, it’s not always that easy at first. They are much more complex in terms of motivating them towards a goal or even the goal. So despite these looks of pity I got from my Soccer Mom’s when I told them I’d be coaching the U11 Girls, I knew it would be a fun and exciting challenge. I just may not have realized how fun and challenging.

Model Soccer Parents

Tweet Old Soccer Guy has a post up about his U18 parents being model soccer parents. If you’re curious what a soccer coach looks for from parents, especially at the select/travel soccer level, he tells you. But even for those of you with kids in Recreational soccer, many of these things are important. So to […]

Gives A New Meaning To ‘Soccer TV’

Tweet I stumbled across this in an ad on LDSM’s Blog. Gives a whole new meaning to Soccer TV. A 10″ LCD TV in the shape of a soccer ball. The speakers are hidden in two of the black patches. Now if only it was widescreen!

Evolution Of The Mini-Van

Tweet The minivan and soccer will be forever linked in America’s id. Soccer moms (and dads) driving the kids to practice in the practical vehicle became second nature to us. As a kid I swore I’d never drive a ‘moon mobile’ because that’s what they looked like back then. But after our first child was […]

The Funk Wars – Opening Salvo

Tweet Having battled the funk for a few years and mostly losing (i.e. I’m much more likely to say ‘Sure!’ when the kids ask for new cleats), I decided to try the kitty littler ‘sachet’ suggestion from a commenter at My Tiny Kingdom, and see what happens. So off to Wal-Mart I go in search […]

Parents Behaving Badly = Not News

Tweet I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s still interesting how the media seems to relish in highlighting the behavior of soccer parents when other sports have their issues too. A few years ago, Raleigh’s Parks and Rec department put up chain link fences to keep parents away from the (pointy) football fields. This was in […]

Developing Leadership With Girls

Coaching girls can be a unique challenge, especially when you try to find or motivate a few player who will lead the team. It’s not easy.

Women’s Pro League Take Two

Tweet Old news, but I’m glad to see there will be a women’s professional league again. I can understand why they want to wait until after the World Cup and Olympics, though I think they probably could have managed to start in 2008 along with the Olympics. Clearly they learned the lessons of the WUSA […]

Take Two Corners And Call Me In The Morning

Tweet Rejoice American soccer fans! You now have ‘expert’ proof that soccer is good for your health! We can finally beat obesity in America – just turn on FSC and cheer. Oh wait. I didn’t read far enough… You actually have to PLAY! Via This Is American Soccer, we find a recent study that compared […]

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes – Pt III

Tweet Ah children – a never ending source of free labor and entertainment… Soccer Mom scored some tickets to a UNC Chapel Hill football game recently and took the two eldest. Soccer Dad got to stay home (don’t cry for me – the beer fridge was full, the little ones were angels, and there were […]

Pass The Damn Ball!!! Or Not

Are we hindering the development of our players by over emphasizing the pass?

Beating Back ‘The Funk’

Tweet Any soccer parent of a child 8 or older becomes quickly acquainted with ‘That SmellTM‘. I’ve had stinking sneakers before, soured wet towels or car carpets, mishaps while emptying RV septic tanks, trips to the local landfill, and even the worst, a gallon of milk that got left in my home office fridge for […]