Wednesday, September 25, 2013

U15G - U15 Girls Youth Soccer

This page is focused on Under 15 girls youth soccer in Region 1.

During this transition from middle school soccer to high school soccer, teams seem to change as quickly as the players do.

Stay tuned.

995 comments:

1 – 200 of 995   Newer›   Newest»
Anonymous said...

Any teams looking for players for the Fall in the shore area?

Anonymous said...

TR may be looking for maybe 1 more.

Anonymous said...

Nice article on college recruiting.

http://files.leagueathletics.com/Text/Documents/2674/39833.pdf

It is interesting that only 6 of the top 40 Academic schools offer athletic scholarships. This is also a good quote "Unfortunately, for most girls, obtaining an athletic scholarship is perhaps one of the worst reasons for pursuing college soccer, and the myths surrounding athletic scholarships are well documented. First of all, this is primarily a parent motivation, since they are generally the one who has to pay tuition. Second, the average women’s soccer scholarship is under $9000; whereas, parents can easily drop $5000-$10,000 a year starting at age 13 to play premier soccer – the math doesn’t add up."

This document comes from an ECNL and NPL Club.

Anonymous said...

Rumor is that another team in Virginia has fallen apart. State Cup semifinalist and Colonial League member LMVSC (Lee Mount Vernon). So it seems like Virginia might be a big huge shakeup.

Anonymous said...

@11:40 - I had heard similar rumors, but I did not think they had any truth. With some of CSC Elite looking for a team, I figured they (LMVS) might pick up a couple. With the influx of the girls from CSC Elite that try to move to McLean, there might be some McLean girls turning to 'free agency' unless they want to play on the CCL or Green team,

Pending the ABGC-FCV showdown between GD & CC, there will certainly be a much different landscape come August.

I suspect that McLean's ECNL team will be one of the biggest beneficiaries. With the talent they already have, plus some additional girls, and the possibility of JH as the new coach, that's a win-win-win for them.

Overall, I think there's going to be some kids left in the dust. You've got 5 teams turning into 3, possibly 4. That will trickle down and cause a lot of shuffling.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

One thing in common with these rumors. ECNL teams get better. all other teams get weaker

Anonymous said...

EDP, ECNL, EIEIO, blah, blah blah

Back to what matters...
How many folks out there see a disconnect with what their training may be teaching vs what their coaches may be coaching?

We don't need to know team, coaches or trainers names. Just would like to hear what your experience might be?

Both of my children have had multiple trainers with the same coach. Two different cases as to why there was a split. In one case the trainer was teaching a possession/patience game that the coach was not crazy about. Came game day the coach would take a direct soccer approach. The trainer quite the team (LOL)...my other child had a trainer (with boat loads of credentials) basically come in, talked a good game, taught 'some' stuff but at the end of the season his only real contribution was a 'cut list' for the coach and the recommendation that he find himself some real athletes. The coach cut this trainer and the team now works with a trainer teaching a small/possession type game that is in line with what the coach is looking for.

Both teams are doing a decent job of playing what the trainer is teaching without any real conflict (ok a couple of parents just don't get it) but that is to be expected on any team.

Any similar experiences? Would you coach have the guts to can a trainer with 100x the credentials more than his own? How about a trainer to say "this is not what I am about" and walk away?

I can only take so much "Isn't' this team/league just full of talent" talk. It's nice to hear about teams having success...but self praise stinks.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

12:56 How do you draw the conclusion that when Clubs fold or consolidate that the other teams get weaker. There are a few incorrect premises that I assume underly your conclusion.

Premise 1: That the bottom of the ECNL clubs will get cut and replaced by top kids from another club. This may strengthen an ECNL club but I am not sure how other clubs get weakened. First, the bottom kid on an ECNL club is still very good and if they get cut, then they are likely going to make the team they go to stronger not weaker even if it is not a prestigious ECNL Club. Also, the determination as to who is at the bottom of an ECNL club is usually left to the determination of one coach. I would bet that there are some incredible players from #11-28 on ECNL clubs that for one reason or another were not a coach's favorite. There is a long history of players that were cut by a youth coach only to become hall of famers in their sport. It is actually unfortunate that many of our kid's soccer future can be determined by one individual, many of whom are very poor at what they do.

Premise 2 must be that when a kid gets cut from an ECNL team that they soccer career goes into the ether and we never hear from those kids again. I think if you do some homework, that at age 14-18 there is actually a consolidation of good teams and regardless of the prestige of being in an ECNL club all clubs improve. That is because with high school many teams fold or lose players. That didn't just start in 2014 . The kids that remain at every level are the kids that love the sport, have some skill, and want to keep playing.

The ECNL gives kids an advantage, no doubt, but to suggest that if you are not on an ECNL team than the team your kid plays for is getting weaker is ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

@2:01PM
I applaud your effort but do you really think logic will come from such an irrational post to begin with.

Those who 'know', can see the premise as faulty. The intent was ill intended.

We should do a collective yawn and just ignore.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

DC Shore, you are probably right, but it's is one thing to come on this blog and disparage a team that didn't do well at a tournament or even a coach who has a thankless job and can never make all parents happy. But sometimes something strikes a chord and you feel the need to respond. To some how suggest that non ECNL teams are weaker demeans the effort of the majority of kids that do not play for an ECNL club. Also, don't come on here as people continually do that a kid who is not a starter somehow has less worth than an starter. The starting lineups are generally set by one individual and many kids are lucky they have the support of that one individual. Just like there are stronger and weaker soccer players, there are stronger and weaker coaches that make bad decisions. It is possible to be proud of your kid's ECNL accomplishments without demeaning others in the process.

Anonymous said...

12:39 John Harkes is not coaching Mclean. Cindi is coaching Mclean U16 ECNL. Look for some of her players to go there.

Anonymous said...

The trainer and the coach are two different people?

Anonymous said...

2:26. You demean kids when you state

"The starting lineups are generally set by one individual and many kids are lucky they have the support of that one individual. Just like there are stronger and weaker soccer players, there are stronger and weaker coaches that make bad decisions."

Do coaches make mistakes, yes but by in large the starters are starting for a reason and those on the bench are there for a reason as well. Please stop with all the nonsense...

SID

Anonymous said...

How did you feel about the USFL? Did you think it was equal to the NFL or did you think the teams were a little weaker?

By saying the NFL is a stronger league didn't it demeans the effort of the majority of players playing in the USFL?

I agree with you in regards to lineups. A good team will dress 18 Starters but only 11 can actually start a game. So which players start and which don't is controlled by one individual, I agree.



Anonymous said...

The NFL was a stronger league and the USFL folded up shop? It has nothing to do with "demeaning" just not enough support to be a viable product.

If you think a coach that spends countless hours over several years watching and training a team just picks names out of a hat as to who starts is frankly ludicrous. If you are a really good team your worst player #18 is almost as good as your best player #1. Unfortunately that is not always the case and the gap between the best and worse is bigger. Regardless of who starts and who doesn't I still believe it is in the players best interest to be (practicing) with the best players they can. I have seen a number of girls who get moved from an A team to a B team with the promise of more playing time. They do get more playing time in games but the practices are so much slower and less focused with B team that the player ultimately loses skills and quickness. Maybe they are happier playing in games I don't know but I do know they are constantly trying to get back on A team.

Anonymous said...

The NFL/USFL analogy is non-sensical. The correct analogy would be when the USFL folded yes the NFL got stronger, but then the remaining players from the USFL and those cut by NFL teams then went to the CFL. In that case, the NFL got stronger, but so would have the Canadian Football teams. The original comment was that the ECNL got stronger and everyone else got weaker. I don't buy. The only people hurt were the disbanded clubs and the players that had to find new clubs. The whole pool of players however is stronger for both the ECNL clubs and other clubs.

In terms of the coach, every coach has their biases and 2 coaches can see the same kid and draw a different conclusion. Both may be very good coached or very bad coaches or average. I doubt that 2 coaches will see the starting 11 the same way, and as stated, there is often a very fine line between 1-11 and 11-15 or even 11-18.

Anonymous said...

I have no issue with saying the ECNL clubs got stronger, which is true based on the USFL analogy, but how does that mean everyone else is weaker. Did all the kids suddenly lose their skill because teams disbanded and players moved to ECNL clubs and probably many other non-ECNL clubs.

Anonymous said...

Did NJSA form a team this age group and other age groups for next year?

Anonymous said...

The season is over in a week and I can't wait to go out and celebrate. I'm taking my child out this horrible mess. She may not continue playing since we 4 tired of the BS and broken promises. Training has been awful and players development and fair treatment is non-existant.
My child has learned nothing on this team and to the parents who think their child is a stud and should play the whole game. We r paying too just like you who make every practice! Your child makes tons of errors and stays in the game due to politics!! Good luck with the 12 players left and to the ones who r staying. Run while you can this team is not going anywhere. Last year at this time they had 11 players left. Now I can see why!!!!!

Anonymous said...

There is an old saying that on every team there are really only 6-7 happy players.
You full roster is not happy because you only get to start 11, one of whom is a keeper.
Teams usually build off a core of 6-7 players. No matter what team you are on that is usually the case. At least on a travel/competitive level.
These 6-7 tend to not be substituted as much. So those 3-4 that are the first subs are usually not happy about it. (anyone disagree with the above)

Do I disagree with my child'ss coach from time to time? Sure I do. But I also disagree with my boss, wife and mother from time to time. You still have to live with these people and be productive about things.
Any beef I have with the coach however is not enough for me to ruin my child's good time. The fact is she is always growing as a player too. That is an expectation that has to be me and honestly has been. I also believe there are more than one right and wrong answer to things. I accept the fact that the coaches are the only one's who get to make the 'big people' decisions as THEY are the coach.

But back to the main point. There are always going to be unhappy player's and parents. What should matter is are expectations overall being met or not? If yes, your situation is not terrible, if not you are insane for not leaving. Why be miserable? Worse yet, why be a poison and make others around you miserable and jump on a blog to complain about it?

At the end of the day any coach with the 18 best players in the state (as absurd as it sounds) would still only be able to start 11 and may likely still have the same 'happiness ratio' I detailed above.

Any thoughts?


DCShoire

Anonymous said...

So how many people have taken on the "DC Shore" monikor at this point, 7 or 8.

Anonymous said...

The fact that the "coach" and the "trainer" are seperate people in your world speaks volumes. I am confused as to how anyone could believe that taking the top players from ABGC and adding them to FC VAs top players and taking the top players from Chantilly and adding them to McLean will not strengthen the ECNL teams at the expense of the USYSA teams. Unless of course you believe other national/regional quality players are going to materialize from the town teams to replace the studs (sic- since they are girls).
This happened last year with PA Classics team a year older. Their top 3 players went to Penn Fusion and Strikers. No magical materialization occurred and their level dropped significantly. Similar to Penn Legacy that year: 2 players in the top 5 go to Penn Fusion and Strikers- they drop a level. Now their other top couple of players are unhappy that no magic occurred to replace the kids with like level players and they look around. Beneficary- Penn Fusion. Penn Legacy replaces them with their b team kids. You really think that there wasnt a strengthening of an ECNL club (Penn Fusion) at the expense of the USYSA club Classics and Penn Legacy and the same is not about to happen in VA, NY and Massachusettes? There are many more examples available- Warrington and FC Bucks, Manhattan and World Class, NEFC and FC Stars, name a team in NJ and PDA...

Anonymous said...

Speaks volumes how? In what way?
Does Barcelona have a Coaxh and a Trainer? Or only a coach?

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Coach= dad
Trainer= someone the dad hires to teach skills to the kids because he has none and doesnt have any idea how to teach them. After all he played basketball in high school or debate team. sometimes someone who can teach the game other times just a guy with an accent.

Anonymous said...

Way to not answer the question.

How does it speak volumes?
Does Barcelona have a coach and a trainer(s) or just a coach?

I know the High School team only has a coach (who also trains) does that speak volumes?

Let me know when you want to have a serious discussion about soccer because even your definitions above are very poor. My 12 year old son would love to sit and teach you about THE GAME.

Lastly, let me know what team you are associated with. I'll arrange for a scrimmage. I will video tape it and post it for those on this board to see. That will also speak volumes. Win/Lose/Draw

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Before anything else though. Please answer the question about Barcelona. Make it easier on yourself check out the staff profiles of the NY Red Bulls, A Head Coach, several assistances, several trainers, technical directors, etc.

I told you not to be stupid. - Ben Stern

DCShore

Anonymous said...

10:47 your exactly right. There is a scenario where a ECNL team gets weaker and that is when 2 or 3 of their best players move to a better neighboring ECNL club.

Anonymous said...

DC Shore has his pants in a twist. Your true colors are showing with the name calling and posturing you are doing.

I will concede at the highest youth levels there may be a grandpa age or bad knees super brain coach who relies on a trainer to demonstrate skills he can no longer perform. The difference between this coach/ trainer situation is that at one point in his life he could have. There would be no disconnect between the coach and the trainer in this situation. The trainer would clearly be subservient to the coach or the coach would find another trainer. Similarly, if a technical trainer disagreed (past tense since you may not even know that he resigned in May and I don't think a new coach has been named yet) with Gerardo (Tato)Martino last year do you think he wouldn't find a pink slip in his box immediately? Your question has no relevance to the professional game because the situation just wouldn't exist.

To try and draw a comparison to the very common dad coach and technical trainer model ubiquitous through lower level youth soccer to a professional coach/trainer model is absurd.

By the way Barcelona does have an equivalent girls aged team. they have a coach and an assistant coach. Similar to our American common higher level model.



Anonymous said...

DCShore you are clearly talking out your bottom sir. Here at June 4 7:11am you challenge a person to tell you what team they are associated with so that you can arrange a scrimmage lol lol lol and yet video tape it. How come when I challenged you to do the same and not for a scrimmage but only to discuss your comments about…………here we go PDA and yes I am a parent. You totally balked on the conversation and never totally turned your head as I wasn’t talking to you. It’s a shame that you try to call this person to the table when you can’t even come to the table yourself. I am not talking about your son’s team but since this is a U14 GIRLS forum I am only speaking about what’s your affiliation regarding U14 Girls soccer. No response to this is just a message to the person you were trying to call out that you are basically a fraud and you’re not really here to discuss but more or less to try and give us your opinion in which I feel you consider LAW………Get out of here with that NONSENSE….and I am a PDA Parent if you need my name I have no problem with that either.

Anonymous said...

As someone said yesterday, there are probably multiple DC Shore's on this site, so who at this point knows who is writing on this blog. I will show show what I mean in my next post.

Anonymous said...

I am a PDA Parent and I find it laughable some of the things written on this site. The fact is that if you are not playing ECNL, you are just playing high-level rec soccer. That's why we have 8 kids willing to to try to crack the top 18 because PDA is the only place that they will get strong quality professional training.

Anonymous said...

I am a PDA Parent and you are fooling yourself if you think coaches at college showcases will watch anyone but an ECNL player.

Anonymous said...

Everything I learned about youth soccer I learned debating with strangers on Youth Soccer Talk.

PDA Parent

Anonymous said...

PDA has 8 kids willing to try to crack the top 18 at World Class....

Anonymous said...

touché 1019

http://www.fcbarcelona.com/football/feminine/detail/card/women-s-infantil-alevin

Anonymous said...

To be honest its not touche' at all. Im just calling it as it is. Sure DCShore has some good opinions and I am sure they can be valid for many teams or clubs ranging from Rec to Academy level. What I like most about it that is that he will clearly talk about someone's club and throw darts at them and ask them to reveal themselves but once that mirror is turned on him or her.....they seem to run away or give you that ol' saying "No one really cares about my club routine...... in order to turn the attention back on the other person but that ain't working with me lol lol I am right back at him with it.

Anonymous said...

1255 that response is difficult to follow. What are you saying?

Anonymous said...

Im talking about and to DCShore about how he uses this blog and the fact that earlier he tried to call out someone or really call their bluff by asking them to tell what club their kid played for. When this type of questioning was given to DCShore weeks ago by myself asking him to do the same he just ignored it and gave the excuse that nobody cares about his club so no need to disclose that. I then again said that it mattered to me that I wanted to know because it would be interested to see how his club ran things due to the fact that he had so many things to say about PDA.

Anonymous said...

As far as i can tell, all DCShore posts have been made by me.

A post was made about how 'telling' it was, presumably about the team and/or poster that the discussion was about separate coaches and trainers. A practice, based on facts, is more common than not from small club travel teams through HUGE international clubs.

I asked for clarification and have yet to receive any. Presumably because the person, lets call him/her The Big Dummy, simply is only repeating what they know and/or have heard rarher than taking at least some time to think and do some research. I helped out by doing both with my rhetorical questioning.

As far as the other charges go i only would take back yhe scrimmage invite. Purely because i have likely seen this persons team already play. I cannot really trust if they are a PDA parent (or any team for that mater). If they happen to be though, my contrarian opinion (not law) is supported by two club teams who not only played equal if nit better games to their PDA opponents in US Cup. They also won. Except for a handful of teams, based on their actual games and play i have ovserved, the major difference between most teans is athleticism. I remind everyone that both Freehold and TRE had coaches and trainers working with their teams. So i ask again, what is 'telling' about this set up?

If anything the one coach approaxh resembles more of a school ball set up. Which does not necessitate it being bad, but we know school ball :/

Lastly i do not throw darts. I lay down opinion (like everyone else) with some thinking behind it.

I do not understand the mirror comment.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

@1:50 PM
I get this strange impression you actually do not take the time to read, rather comprehend, the arguments and statements people are making.

VERY OFTEN, I talk about the way things 'should' be as opposed to the way they are. This includes my own club.

But it appears you only focus on my talk regarding PDA, which is really not all that much except for a specific point or two.

I am also the same guys who was told to 'calm down' when I was defending what I saw as the pejorative use of the 'A, B, C' team tags assigned to PDA teams. I was corrected, by (supposed) PDA parents that those designations were used internally and thus not offensive.

So PLEASE, do not just read the occasional criticism as I have for PDA. Which is really only one aspect but I am done repeating myself. Maybe you can take the time to read the previous posts and understand what is being said. I have had plenty of positives to say.

I much prefer to talk about the game and what 'should be done' as opposed to 'who is doing what'.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

DC shore:
Why do you feel it necessary to call posters names such as "big dummy"? That type of behavior only hurts your credibility. Why did you not respond to the 834 post?

Anonymous said...

I usually do not feel it necessary. In this case i felt a little right about it.

What part of that post do you want me to respond to?

DCShore

Anonymous said...

DCShore see what you are missing is that even if you say one thing about PDA, and I am a PDA parent as I have been saying all along you must know that I am going to respond to it especially if it is something negative. Am I defending them…no but my child plays there and I am defending her choice of where she is playing at the moment. Yes you are entitled to you opinion and I would never say that you can’t say what you think. This is a free country to some degree lol and our freedom of speech is something that I would never want taken away. I have read your selective criticism of PDA as well as others but when I have asked you what about your club so we can compare you balk on that because believe it or not your club is just as guilty if not worse than PDA. I do know that your kids just don’t play for a normal town team……..NOPE no way in heck would I even believe that you do. I find it funny that now you apologize or you take back the point that you invited someone out on the floor and challenge them to bring his or her son’s team to scrimmage. I find it funny that you even did that but what I find even more funny is that you now retract that statement because I was watching and I called you out on how it was easy it was for you to do that and how difficult it was when I asked you. Well DCShore my kid is the PDA Gunners and she is proud of that at the moment that she has the opportunity to play for the club. I mean she is proud of it and if my kid is proud of it then I support it right now. I sit here and no I don’t have to call you names like DUMMY which I don’t think by far you but I think you are wrong in your opinion and I think you are blinded by your dislike of PDA because they are the focus of most of your conversations. Remember when you look in that mirror its tough sometimes to see that reflection when you know that I may be correct about you. So DCShore you wanna scrimmage PDA ABCDEFG team. I will pass on your request to the coaches if you like. By the way what is the name of your U14G team………lol lol that REFLECTION is bright isn’t it cause I aint going away……

Anonymous said...

PDA Gunners guy - lots of your team trying out at another ECNL club? What's going on there?

Anonymous said...

That’s a fair question and I will give you my honest opinion. The reason why this is occurring is that parents are looking for the best situation for their child. Is PDA for everyone….if you want my selfish opinion I will say yes but my honest opinion I would say no. Sure its great training and you got kids coming in every year that haven’t been seen or been playing elsewhere that are very talented. Does this mean that these kids are better……….no but if you know anything about sports you will know that sometimes it’s not that talent that gets seen all the time but more sometimes the relationship that the play and coach have and what that particular coach is seeing in that kid. Does this mean that the girls that are deciding to leave are bad players……..heck no and not by far. They are very talented and that’s what makes it a bitter sweet thing to see parents make the switch but I know the girls will be okay and I know they will shine where ever they go because the parents have it together and they are doing what’s best for their kid. The girls that are leaving will still have a relationship with the girls that are staying. As I said before this team is like no other. For the most part all the families really get along and we do cheer for each other’s kid and we support them as parents. The girls that have left prior to this are still part of the circle meaning that when we see them at games we hug, kiss and talk about old times and new times and just continue to enjoy each other. We all know that youth sports can be cut throat but I will say that we as parent of the Gunners and previous Gunners and Gunners that are leaving we will always continue to be connected and we will still continue to cheer the success of the kids regardless of where they play or end up. I don’t know if that answers your question but all the moving about is just to get a better situation for their children which they should be doing. Remember folks you all pay to be where you at and you have choices. These are not “CONTRACTS” that you are signing and no one owns your child. If you are happy where you are then stay and if you not make the best decision for your kid because at the end of the day that is what matters and hopefully at the end of the day those that you called friend, associate etc will still remain the same regardless of soccer. Those that have left and those that continue to leave I will never miss them. Nope I will not miss them at all because I know I will see them again soon. Either on the soccer field, Gunnerque, get together etc.

Anonymous said...

@9:17AM
Where do you get I dislike PDA? Honestly I tire of this. If you have been following all along, I have basically sang praise for the things they do VERY very well. I am not going to repeat myself here.
I will repeat that my only criticism is the false advertising that they are a DEVELOPMENT academy. They are not. IT DOES NOT MAKE IT A BAD PLACE OR ORGANIZATION, but I stand behind this criticism. Also the predatory behavior displayed with the TRE situation. It's just wrong...but hey every Academy would do the same so this is not just on PDA.

PLEASE go out and read about the European Club and Academy programs (if you have not done so already). It's also ok to admit that beyond visiting a few web sites you may not really know all that much. This would not make you a dummy. Making silly statements would. I say this without an ounce of venom. I'll even take back my dummy comment. I do get the opinion that you only see things through the context of your own personal experience and that of your child. Have you even watched a youth soccer match that did not involve your child? Their age bracket or league? You might be missing quite a bit. Why am I able to talk so confidently (and I'll add accurately) about so many teams? Because I am a genius? A former professional player? A former celebrated coach? NO. It's because I watch, read, listen and learn as much as i can. I can tell that many others on this board do too.

I 'may' have had the advantage of working out in Europe for over 8 years. 20+ countries. While my time there was not tied to soccer...do you think I poked around a bit, followed a few matches and spoke to a few coaches? Three guesses and your first two do not count.

A great book to get would be SOCCERNOMICS. Specifically focus on the chapters regarding the Barcelona system. Do you REALLY think they do not have trainers working with the young players? Do you really think they they are out to create 'stud' U12, U13, U14 teams? U6? Learn what they do with 'stud' players. Learn that their coaches are not paid on winning, but rather development. Etc.

Why i retracted the invite was also addressed. I have already seen your team play. REMEMBER the PDA Gunners are a team that I have not seen play in 2 years but when I did they pretty much played THE GAME. The only PDA team that actually plays a very-good to great game. The other, like most teams, play a good-very good game. PDA is just able to recruit stronger athletes and thus those teams are stronger. But there is NOTHING overly telling about the PDA system vs a solid Town Club system with at least some support and structure.
Looking back, the invite to scrimmage is silly and not in my traditional spirit. We all have moments of weakness.

You can believe what you want. My children play for town teams. Teams that are well coached and trained. Not EVERYTHING is done the way I wish it were but those are not realistic expectations. The program itself is solid and the players are left alone to develop. And they are a happy bunch. I would be the world's worst dad if I pulled them from their teams for any ambitions of mine. Also, I'm not sure they are cut out for it.

My interest is in soccer. That's why I tend to ask soccer questions and focus on the structure and play more than who is winning, who beat who, etc. Being greeted with "well that is very telling" and NEVER even getting a response (up to the time I am writing this) is aggravating.

You are free to have whatever last words you wish.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

The Gunners have the perfect situation. Perhaps it's a consequence of having a highly competitive and successful team. I don't know that the Gunners nirvana exists everywhere at PDA. The South team has far less of a nirvana which would indicate it is the Gunners not PDA as whole. The situation in the South is a bit of a mess, and doesn't seem like it will improve any time soon. It's been mismanaged from the start. People call it a "B" team but it was meant to be a team that would be competitive with the Gunners. Now we are traveling up and down the East Coast, to play non-competitive games, the Gunners carrot has been dangled with little follow-through, and the DOC threatened tryouts for 3 months which completely destabilized things a bit. The DOC told us how great the tryout turnout would be and that turned out to be a near completer failure. So we should be clear that your team's success as group is not everywhere at PDA.

Anonymous said...

DC Shore You are exactly right on the development. The US is the only place in the world that people view games and the outcome as the essential measure of team success. In Europe, the focus is on training first with a training to game ratio well in excess of the US. Although it is about 10 years old this situation has probably only gotten worse:

In a study of 1500 ODP level female players, the average number of games reported played over the previous twelve months was 116. With an average game duration of 80 minutes and a maximum roster of 18, and with the ball out of play for an average 33%, the typical player would experience 1.5 minutes of active play per game for a total of 174 minutes per year. Less than 3 hours of ball contact! (Turner, 2003)

Under FIFA-3 substitution rules, a young soccer player competing in 100 games per year will only come into contact with the ball for a maximum of 300 minutes, or 5 hours. The recommended ratio of training sessions to games for 9-12 year-old players is 70% training and 30% games.

Anonymous said...

ECNL to ECNL = net 0 of talent in ECNL
USYSA to ECNL= net loss of talent at USYSA

DC shore
Do you think that the red bull technical director who is listed on their DA team page trains the team- is the equivalent of a "trainer"?

No they have the same structure as any other high level team. A head coach who largely trains the team and several assistants who also serve as head coaches of the other teams and fill in for the head coach when conflicts arise. The technical director sets the training curriculum and administers it throughout the year.

No the coach/trainer structure to which the original question "How many folks out there see a disconnect with what their training may be teaching vs what their coaches may be coaching?"
This situation can only occur when a "coach" most frequently the father of one of the players on the team, disagreed with the paid "trainer"- someone who purports to have played and understands the game well enough to teach it. The "coach" frequently does not have a playing background and may have been athletic as a child but primary sport was football basketball or baseball. He frequently played all three through high school. or he's an athlete want to be.

The "coach" hires a trainer to train the team because he doesn't have the knowledge or ability to teach the kids. Give him credit because he recognizes this fact. In this common circumstance, DC shore recognizes that there could be conflict because the trainer wants to play one style while the coach another. Usually the conflict arises because the coach wants to win games to keep kids from leaving to greener pastures and to maintain his own bragging rights.

The higher level teams usually have a coach and assistant coach (like do the redbulls) to train the kids. The coach was usually a high level player who has attended coaching courses and achieved licensures from various entities. Unless the head coach is older or has a nagging injury, he can demonstrate to the kids as well s offer instruction. He doesn't need a trainer to do this for him. The assistants are there as another set of eyes and to fill in in the head coach's absence. They frequently also are head coaches of other teams in the clubs. The head coach and assistant don't generally disagree on style and if they did the assistant would defer to the head. Perhaps if the assistant was concerned that the head coach was not following the curriculum set by the training director or was encouraging play against the philosophy of the club, then he might discuss his concerns with the DOC. However I am sure that this is an uncommon event.

Barcelona's 1st team's coach (currently without one since Geraldo Martino resigned) dictates the style of play and hires and fires his assistants (trainers) as he sees fit. The professional coaches were outstanding players in their time (Pep Guardioloa) though sometimes (Sir Alex) their coaching success far exceeds their playing success. The set the rules there is no dissent. To make an analogy between barcelon's 1st team's structure and our own commonplace coach/trainer structure is not valid- apples to oranges.

On the other hand it would be legitimate to compare Barcelon's youth teams structure to ours and if done so you will see a coach and assistant coach the same as red bulls, PDA and other well known and respected clubs.

Since you took such great offense as to start name calling and insulting people on the board. I assume that you are the "coach" of a team that employs a "trainer". Which team was that?

Anonymous said...

@11:38
I am not the Coach or proponent of any one system.
I appreciate your feedback regarding the coach/training scenario. Which, you admit yourself, exists in our universe and beyond (to varying capacities).

Or is this boards just about the PDA universe? Which it seems that parent is so interested in defending despite the fact there is no attack. At least coming from me.

To reply to my initial inquiry with; "yep, have seen it", "nope, have never seen it", "our coach is also our trainer" are all acceptable answers.
To answer with "that question is very telling" is just nonsense and YOU know it. Based on everything you just wrote.

You provided some great insight with your answer and is probably most accurate in most situations. I would argue that there are also instances where two great minds come together. Sometimes these relationships change too. How about trainers who oversell what they have done? Or what they are capable of? Or, just want to win too and do not want to be associated with teams that lose? There is so much more to be discussed, if people are interested in.

What do you think the parent meant by "it is telling" with regards to the coach/trainer relationship. Was he/she interested in discussion? Or just another chance to draw spotlight on the fact their child plays for PDA? Maybe you can accept some of us are interested in more than such discussions.

I feel I am in my right and it is perfectly fair to make comparisons so everyone's overall level of understanding is increased. As you clearly admit yourself, there may be reasons, even economic reasons, as to why teams/clubs do or do not use trainers. ON ANY LEVEL.

I can point to Barcelona (wither Messi's side, or the equivalent youth level team) in order to make comparison's. In truth, why would the reason to use a trainer differ? Simply based on age? Or need? For whatever that need/desire may be.

"Since you took such great offense as to start name calling and insulting people on the board. I assume that you are the "coach" of a team that employs a "trainer". Which team was that?"
---> It's a shame you want to look at it this way.
I took offense to what I thought was the start of a potentially healthy discussion, even if just trading war stories, turned into yet another discussion as to why one set of things 'sucks' while the other 'rules. If you read my post you will see that intent.
I am ok with you taking offense to the name calling. Not something I normally do. Emotionally I felt it was warranted. I could be wrong about that.

I admire a great many teams, including this parents PDA team. I also recognize that success/failure comes in many different forms and that most of the 'problem's teams have are shared by 100% of the teams sometimes and 95% of the teams on a regular basis. From Rec to the Champions League.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

@11:38 AM
Answer me this question.
You seem to have insight.

Beyond the coach/trainer organization.
What other comparisons can you make. Positive and negative with regards to US Academy programs and Barcelona.

What are the arrangements? Ambitions?
How are teams arranged? How are players moved? What do they do with super talented players? Players who may have skill but are a little slow? Fast but with little skill?

Now if you do not know I'll accept that as an answer. But something tells me you know.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

To the great PDA model, I am currently living it in the South. There is supposed to be a head coach and an assistant coach, but we rarely if ever see an assistant coach. Despite our $2500 price tag it is mainly one coach and one team.

Anonymous said...

@1242, then why stay? Everyone knows the issues and empty promises at PDA south but you were all still scared your daughters were going to get cut. Now that the roster is set, you want to complain?

Anonymous said...

Happened upon this EXCELLENT article.

http://www.oregonyouthsoccer.org/assets/coaches/Comparing_the_US_Soccer_Environment_to_the_World.pdf

Thoughts?

DCShore

Anonymous said...

I was commenting on the Coach/Assistant model and the comments of how terrific things are with the Gunners and they aren't true in all of PDA. Why stay? It is a good question but it mainly has to do with the number of choices that are out their for high level soccer especially in South Jersey.

Anonymous said...

DC Shore, here is another article that argues against the dangers of a Pyramid and closed structure that currently exists in the US. This was a quote that speaks to the European model rather than the current US closed system.

"We must strenuously protect the pyramid structure of our sport against any potential breakaway groups, or elitist closed leagues with no chance of promotion or relegation,’’ says Uefa.


The European governing body adds that "we remain totally committed to the European model of sport, a model characterised by promotion and relegation, the solidarity principle, as well as open competitions and opportunity for all. This is what sport – and especially football – is all about. We have to protect this model because sport is not simply a business like any other and we cannot allow it to be treated as such. We will continue to defend the specificity of sport and are convinced that our arguments will prevail for the good of football.

Anonymous said...

Here is the link, promotion and relegation would be great.

http://www.pugetsoundpremierleague.com/home/503479.html

Anonymous said...

@8:38

Great Article and I noticed from the same author as my link.

Seeing the forrest through the trees I found the most 'telling' statement was:
"Of course, not meeting in competition is not a bad idea for those, "elite clubs" awarded the "golden ticket" to an ECNL, US Developmental Academy or WCDA competition - all closed competitions. For these clubs and their directors enjoy a membership not enjoyed by their competitors - many of whom have teams which are their equal on the field - whose players they want and often get - due to their membership in a closed league. Its a nice place to be – if you get in – unless you can’t afford the money “necessary” to travel to compete against the other “elite” players in “elite” clubs."

Definitely one problem to the system in the U.S.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

To 5;10 .


Much has been learned since my first daughter has gone through the PDA system.


We are blessed with an 8 year old that will take a different path.


You can indeed work through the current system and find a model that mimics the european model , but you must be very specific in the turns you make for development and ignore US conventional training and team methodology.. not sure where this different path will take my youngest but am willing to give a try.

Anonymous said...

8;38 The ECNL clubs would never accept an open system of promotion and relegation. It would make sense that a US CLub teams could earn it's way up to the NP up to the ECNL level. But that would threaten the nice position they have today which is basically that we are the only ECNL game in town. People wouldn't be rushing to ECNL clubs in an open system. It actually is sad for soccer because it is exclusionary. We know that many teams in the ECNL: at current have nor right being there and same with the NPL. One only needs to look at the score differentials to see that the leagues would benefit from promotion and relegation.

Anonymous said...

Doesn't ECNL and NPL drop clubs and add new ones from time to time? I know at least one club in MD that is trying to become an ECNL club. Just remember when you judge an ECNL club don't just look at the U14 age group, look at all the age groups for that club to see how they are doing. Any one age group could be a struggling group.

Anonymous said...

PWSI in Virginia wants to become an ECNL club. Same with Loudoun and BYRC. Very little chance of Maryland getting a third team. For a club to get accepted, they need a current strong slate from U14 to U18 and that is what is holding back PWSI. The 99 group is average and 98 team just left for NVSC. Rumor is Virginia Rush has been kicked out of ECNL.

Anonymous said...

Can you argue for development & training over winning and also talk about promotion and relegation?

Anonymous said...

11:21 The fact that it is club based in my opinion makes it more of a closed system, because it protects clubs that have weaker teams in an age group that are otherwise undeserving. I personally can't see a good argument for a closed system accept that it keeps a gatekeeper deciding who gets in and who doesn't. A good town or academy team that's not an ECNL Club has little chance of getting the exposure. I also believe this is what PDA and other large influential clubs wants because it creates an artificial elite system that draws people to certain clubs at the exclusion of others because of the value the ECNL brings. As the article states, outside of the US it is hard to find any soccer system that is not open to all based on performance.

Anonymous said...

DCSHORE @June5, 10:24am
First I have to only respond to what applies to me. Oh and by the way I am not the one you called “Dummy” or this conversation and the previous responses would’ve been a lot different from me. Yes in my opinion you dislike PDA I will say that and I will stand by it. I don’t know it’s just something that I feel gets under your skin the way they do things. I truly feel that from your post and your written attitude toward them. They are falsely advertising anything. They have developed kids. For one mine has been developed at PDA since she has been here since 7 years of age. So how is that false when I can clearly prove that statement wrong and it’s not an opinion but that’s a fact. No can you say that they haven’t developed “EVERYONE”…….okay I will agree but certainly that would apply for every other team /club in the country.
You ask me to go look at the European Club and Academy programs. Thanks but no thanks and not because I refuse to educate myself or gain knowledge but more for the simple fact that I am not European and my kid does not play there. How would what they do apply to my child. Lets speak about women’s soccer not men’s. I think that’s a big problem for Americans now is that we are too much trying to be like someone else and not just be who we are. In soccer all everyone talks about is the EUROPEAN way…………..sure there are a lot of talent in Europe I will give them that but I ask where does it come from. South America, Brazil, China, Japan….etc. Not everyone in Europe has been developed in Europe in my opinion. Who takes claim to the Messi, Ronaldo’s the Neymar’s etc EUROPE……I think not.
Why you retracted your comment of the scrimmage invite it was not of something you now say was foolish it was because you were called out for being what you claim others are. In my eyes it was your ego and chest beating mentality that your kid’s team is better than his or hers and you were willing to take them out in the backyard and show them who’s boss. Sounds like a bully to me but hey no name calling right. You say that the Gunners actually play the game which I would say thank you for noticing but what you don’t know or probably seen in the last two years has been DEVELOPMENT, but what kills me about that statement is that I could name of the top of my head about 20 other U14G New Jersey teams that play the game or same game as PDA but what the difference is that DEPTH that PDA has. Most teams top 11 are right there for most part. It’s after that 11 where the talents is off or just below what PDA can bring to the table and that is what makes the difference in most cases in my true opinion.
You child playing for a town team sure………………and you are correct “I DON’T BELIEVE YOU” nope not for one bit. What I will tell you is that your child means something to me because she represents the beautiful state of NJ and when she goes out there and do well and hopefully makes it to that next level she will be representing not just her family but mine also and instead of knocking her DEVELOPMENT and saying that she is in the wrong place I am going to say girl keep getting it in and trust me the letters on your chest never matter………….it’s the person inside that jersey that does.
I don’t need the last word DCSHORE because as I told you before……your not here to have a conversation really, you are just hear to tell us the LAW and how we are soooooo under you……….anyway when you look in that MIRROR in the morning or night……don’t worry that reflection will have the last word always because you are who you are and I know it.

Anonymous said...

@1:46AM
You have the last word.

Good Day

DCShore

Anonymous said...

@1:19 - i agree. I'm no expert, but I've been around long enough to gather enough information to form some (hopefully) intelligent opinions. There are some issues too large to address in this format, but I think that US Club Soccer and USYS need to work together to work towards the end goal of producing quality players. Each group also needs to have their own "piece if the pie" so to speak. Make USYS the "development" branch and USCS the "showcase" branch.

First, let's assume that ECNL retains the sanctioning of the top level leagues. Ditch the exclusionary practices of the past and allow teams in if they are deserving. Make ECNL the "A" league and NPL the "B" league. Use USYS regional leagues as feeder leagues. If a team makes it to the top of a USYS feeder league, promote them to NPL regardless of their parent organization (USYS or USCS). Relegate the bottom of the ECNL and NPL leagues down one step so that NPL teams move down to USYS regional leagues.

This way the ECNL will truly have the top teams in all age groups and will have much more parity across the board. Club membership in either USYS or USCS is a much more difficult nut to crack so I won't bother dealing with that. But if the two organizations honor each other's rosters, teams can move freely between leagues. USYS could then open up state cup competition to USCS teams.

Just some wild ideas.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

After reading 1:19's post again, what's wrong with having "independent" clubs for adopting teams that want to play in (and are good enough) the USYS leagues? That would open up USCS membership for clubs that don't have strong teams at every age. PWSI might not currently have strong teams at some age groups, but thy have historically had strong teams at most age groups. Having a regional independent club would allow for strong teams from smaller (or non-USCS) clubs to participate.

Maybe put the management of the independent clubs under a coalition of the existing area USCS clubs so they don't feel like they're being infringed upon. Or make them non-voting members, or the equivalent - I'm not sure how the manager if the USCS clubs works.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

That last statement should be: I'm not sure how the management of the USCS clubs works.

Anonymous said...

Can you argue for development & training over winning and also talk about promotion and relegation?
June 6, 2014 at 1:13 PM

I am going to avoid the DC Shore PDA Parent fight, but yes you can have Promotion and Relegation and development and training. I would hope that winning is a consequence of development and training and not just strong recruiting which I believe has gotten stronger for the ECNL Clubs because of the closed system. Part of training and development is by playing against competitive teams that challenge other teams especially other teams that can expose your team's weaknesses to force you to improve. If you look at some of the scores in the ECNL and NPL leagues there is a great disparity between the top 1-2 teams and the rest. It is a generalization but one that holds true. It doesn't do a team any good when they have nearly every game where the goalie is a spectator and the defense is never challenged. There are NPL teams that are consistently beating ECNL teams. Those NPL teams are pitched at the wrong level. Take NEFC, they are NPL only but are highly competitive when they do play ECNL teams, yet due to the closed system they can't play ECNL and they will be challenged to keep their best kids because thee ECNL is where many kids want to play. The PDA Pride has walked through their NPL league and have beaten a few ECNL teams including a few teams that the Gunners compete against in their ECNL league. I don't equste the Pride with NEFC but they too based on being pitched at the right competitive level should not be in their current NPL league or new teams should be brought into their NPL league. The same could be said for FC Stars that play in the same NPL league. While ultimately the records are the best objective measure to determine promotion and relegation and it takes politics out of decision making, but ultimately every team should be playing in leagues that are by and large competitive. In the Gunners NPL League The Goal differential by team is WC 66, PDA, 50 Bucks 19, Fusion 15, Match Fit 7, Delco -26 - the goal differential for the bottom 3 teams in Virginia ECNL range from -24 to -32. In the Northeast NPL in 14 games FS Stars has given up 5 goals and PDA 3 against 45 and 40 goals for. They are winning, but I would argue that those games have done little to develop and improve the players when playing in competitive situations.

Anonymous said...

Sometimes you don't need to speak..........The Reflection will say it all......see sometimes people can recognize the light but can't handle the glare..........

Anonymous said...

NOVA, I am not from your area so I don't understand it as much, but even in the closed system, what's wrong with having 1-2 at-large teams enter an ECNL league based on an objective system or have an ECNL at large qualifying tournament for US Club Carded teams. I don't think you'll ever see such a thing because it would go contra to the purpose of the ECNL if suddenly independent teams were regularly beating ECNL teams in their leagues.

Anonymous said...

NOVA

You are starting to see regional groupings like this. Richmond United FC in Virginia, NC Fusion in NC. FC Virginia in the DC area is trying to do this, but the powerful clubs like PWSI, Loudoun, BYRC are fighting tool and nail against FC Virginia. FC Virginia was formed because of Terry Foley's reputation. Had Foley not lived in Loudoun County, the natural evolution would have taken place and probably Loudoun, Mclean, and PWSI would be the ECNL clubs. But FCV was formed without a large talent pool. They don't have a rec program. They didn't have fields. Alot of those issues have been addressed. Foley is now trying to build a regional partnership with ABGC, CYA, Ashburn, and more. The problem is that ECNL clubs are not interested in recruiting top teams. They are interested in having teams form at U9. Develop players.

Anonymous said...

@2:36 - At-large teams or a qualifier is actually a good idea. Who cares if an independent team beats a "regular" team? Go to the ECNL's overview page and you'll see the following listed in their mission statement:

- Improving the competitive environment through creation of a true national competitive league with multiple flights;

- Improving the process for identifying elite female soccer players for the U.S. Soccer youth national teams through a systematic scouting and identification program based on national competitions;

There's nothing in this that would be violated by having independent teams. The assertion that the top teams in every age group will belong to member clubs is just not true in all cases. Now it may hold true in a majority of the cases.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

@2:53 - I think the opposite is true. Not all (or not too many many) ECNL clubs are interested in developing players. They are recruiting players that have been developed at other clubs. They are concerned with forming teams that have the top (already developed) talent so they can be competitive.

And even with the regional model, there will (or could) be holes at certain age groups from time to time.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

I might have generalized too much. I have seen cases where a majority of the team's rosters were made up of players from outside the club. There are clubs that promote from within when forming their ECNL teams.

NOVA

Anonymous said...

I think many of you are missing the point as to what ECNL is trying to do. ECNL was not established to promote "teams" it was set up to promote and showcase "players". I realize that all the best players are not in ECNL but if you set up a league (yes exclusive) and start by theoretically giving the exclusive rights to clubs that have the resources and history of promoting and developing players thats a good start. Its set up so that the best "players" come to ECNL not ECNL looking for good teams.

Anonymous said...

@5:07
I would say exactly right...but we know it is not really about showcasing players. It is about showcasing clubs/teams.

But even if we assume your stated ambitions are correct, the lack of vision/development in the whole process is what keeps us wanting and criticizing.

There are plenty of 'fine' player to showcase but not in a closed league where 'Clubs' are protecting their most valuable assets, increasing their attractiveness to outside players, and colluding with others to keep others out. I cannot accept such a narrow vision of how things should work.

NO, this is not Europe. YES, we are talking about developing the beautiful game.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

5:07 I think most people recognize what they are trying to do, and you are probably right about what their stated goals are. You can search long and hard and I think you will find few experts that support an ECNL type exclusive system. One of the ECNL's first problems is that they have a Board of Directors that is all made up of member club representatives. There are no independent Board members, there are no US Soccer representatives, just ECNL members so clearly they will serve their own best interests. Outside of ECNL members, show me an expert that supports a closed exclusive system. There are quite a few experts supporting an open pyramid system. Here are a couple of links to read, the first is Klinsmann, the second argues the number one problem with US soccer is the lack of a pyramid system and the existence of a monopolistic anti-competitive system, instead of listening to people on the blog listen to the experts, and I'd welcome to see if there exists outside of the ECNL members anyone supporting the CLosed ECNL type system:

http://www.goal.com/en-us/news/1679/us-national-team/2012/03/05/2947800/klinsmann-believes-pickup-and-playground-soccer-is-key-to

Anonymous said...

Here is the second link:

http://blog.3four3.com/2014/02/13/mls-promotion-relegation-us-soccer/

Anonymous said...

Now on another level, and i have mentioned this befire, what is also missing is whst the Germans call "strasse fussball" or what we would refer to as 'pickup games'. It seems that everything now is about organized play. Very few opportunities, and i bet in some cases desire, to just play for the sake of playing (love) of the game. It is tiugh to develop a pasiin for the game when everything is in a 'workman' type setting. No chance to try for creativity, increase their decision/making, and see others plat the game.

In this case soccer is far from unique, especially at the youth level. Heck, in many areas you have a better chance of finding a hobbit than a 'decent' rec league.

As I (and many others) have maintained, there is too much money, especially in the wrong areas, with the support. A superior checkbook can have as nuch influence on where , how often, and what level a child plays as much as theur technical playing level. Same goes for some teams.

Overall not healthy for a developing program.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

The USSF created the closed system in the USA by creating the DA. The clubs, specifically PDA, saw how the DA brought players (money) flocking to the club and said, "hey we dont really need the USSF to sanction the 'uber' league for girls we only need a critical mass of the top clubs to do it.

And they were right it worked for those clubs smart or political eniough to get in. Doesnt work for small clubs with one or two great coaches with great teams.Subject to much debate on whether it works for the kids or the USNT success.

Anonymous said...

8:57 There is debate on blogs like this, but where is there real debate? If you search out articles, there is a lot of criticism from people who should know (Klinsmann) speaking about how the US soccer stucture inhibits development, but very little debate from people in the know supporting a closed non-pyramid system. Share the reference if you find support.

I think the ECNL Board speaks volumes, there is no independent representation, there is no external high level soccer representation.

http://www.eliteclubsnationalleague.com/overview/493452.html

As someone who runs a company with 2 independent Directors, I am aware that when you run a business with no independent representation, you live in an insular environment and you begin to believe your own BS.

Anonymous said...

9:52
And it is always about the bottom line $'s. You follow the money and it becomes evident.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

857
There are those small non-ecnl clubs out there with great teams, but simply not enough to make a difference. Probably a handful in every region.
Once players get to college, if they are difference makers, they will get noticed.

Anonymous said...

@12:15PM
Difference maker on a college team, sure.
But I think the focus is on the overall development strategy...or lack of.

I see a tremendous amount of kickball being played in soccer. Why? Answer: Money, Jobs, and the wrong incentives.
College play is not really about being a feeder system for beyond school play. It's all about recruiting top athletes/players (order may vary) and winning each and every year. An extension of much of the 'Academy' model.

HORRIBLE

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Mid atlantic cup shaping up with some good competition. Last year was a little weak. Nice are for a summer family vacation(Hershey Park)/ tournament.

http://www.paclassics.org/mac/index_E.html

Anonymous said...

The problem with youth soccer has nothing to do with ECNL and or a "closed non pyramid system. The problem with youth soccer is we have too many clubs and not enough really good coaches teaching technical skills. High schools are littered with club players who have presumably played for years and still can't control a hard ball passed to them. So if your honest you have to blame the coach / club for not teaching or the player not working hard enough to achieve basic skills. I laugh when I hear all the horrors regarding HS's "direct kickball" game. Well - many of these players are club players and what's a HS coach to do? If you are not technically inclined you have to resort to kickball to win, and HS has a mandate to win.

The answer is fewer clubs, and more control over what is being taught at very young ages. If you are not a technical player by U14 you have missed your window.

Anonymous said...

As legitimate as your point about not enough quality coaches (certainly true to an extent) you lose me with the ""has nothing to do with ECBL and a closed statem".

A pretty incredible statement.

Perhaps you can explain the benefits of a closed system. Who it benefits and how it promotes development. Provide some supporting papers and research.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Well that's a simple answer. It benefits the owners of those clubs. Stinks like money and payoffs.

Anonymous said...

High School will always be what it is which is a place for kids from the the same town to play together. However, there are hundreds (I think close to 600) of high schools in NJ. There are not enough kids playing soccer and playing soccer where the club has the resources to or desire to build a top soccer program. The best high school teams are the best because they have a very high population in their town to draw from. There is a lot of good training out there, but when it comes to high school, especially in smaller towns, you don't get a team of kids that have had an equal level of desire or commitment to the sport and a coach has to do the best with what they have.

Anonymous said...

DC,

I can't produce any scientific evidence… All I can tell you is I have seen a lot of youth soccer and I can share with you what I have seen and my daughters own experiences. My daughter started in rec, then went to a medium size town club team, now she plays for a ECNL team at a large club (by far her best experience / coaching to date). I have seen the full gambit of coaching, from horrible to what I would consider very good.

I will stick by what I have said earlier because of what I have seen with my own eyes, and that is there is NO set standard as to how kids are taught to play soccer - even within the same club. That is why girls youth soccer is mostly kickball and ECNL has nothing to do with that fact. In a nutshell and not wanting to write a novel, I can tell you youth soccer is driven by winning and its a lot easier to teach a team to win than it is to teach a truly possession style game. To do that the whole team needs to be comfortable with the ball at their feet. If you have 3 or 4 kids that struggle with this the team will breakdown at times during the game and yes lose games. It takes a lot of practice and great coaching to become that kind of team. That is something that a vast majority of parents / kids don't even understand, if they did we would never see the soccer we do now. Only when the parents / kids demand that the product change, either by leaving to play with possession style teams or hiring possession style coaches to coach their teams will we ever see a fundamental change in the product we see now. Like I said most clubs, kids, and parents are not that patient. Teaching this style of possession style soccer is the model I believe is best suited to developing exceptional soccer players while at the same time improving the game. ECNL provides that structure and "space" to teach that game. True possession style teams might not win all the tournaments or frankly win much at all at the youth level but they are being taught how to play the game correctly. They don't rely on 2 or 3 incredible athletes to win games. They are teams that can plug in anyone of their 18 players and keep possession of the ball

You and others seem to want to blame ECNL for all the ills you see in soccer. ECNL has nothing to do with the fact that most teams play kickball or that most of the U14 youth girl players are not adequate with the ball at their feet. To me ECNL is trying to solve that problem by teaching technical skill sets or at a minimum trying to set a standard where others have not.

ECNL is not a (closed league) it is open to every player in the US that tries out and makes a team once a year. ECNL provides an option for truly dedicated hard working soccer players to train and play together in a league. I find it hard to believe that that is bad for soccer.

Anonymous said...

12:22am to doc

Clearly have drank the Cool Aid if you truly believe that everyone except for the ECNL teams play kickball. My daughter to plays on an Academy Team and we have played ECNL teams, NPL teams as well as large club teams and I have witnessed kickball played by some ECNL teams and the other teams also play kickball. However some very good non ECNL teams, NEFC, MANHATTAN, STALLIONS And NJSA seem to play a pretty good possession game in my opinion. Even some club teams, Toms River, Freehold, SJEB are also capable of playing a possession game.

Sure these teams will struggle against the likes of the top ECNL team, Gunners, Stars and World class but beyond theses teams I would say any of. The teams I mentioned could compete with any of the other ECNL teams in the region.

Also, you say possession style is something taught at the youth level. Being that most kids on a ECNL roster were not on that team since the ripe young age of 8 or 9, wouldn't some credit have to go to some of theses so called clubs that you say are not capable of playing anything other than kickball?

Lastly, you say ECNL is not a closed system but you are fooling yourself is you believe that two ECNL teams in NJ covers all of the good soccer players in this state. Yes it is open to everyone but you can only take so many on a roster. Furthermore, the cost and travel factors are to much of a burden for some so you miss a lot of talent there as well.

You are correct that ECNL is a good league and the academy teams are good places for your child to continue to grow, because most are developed before they get to academies. What most people want is a league where the best teams compete regardless of affiliation which would allow those clubs that are capable of teaching something other than kickball a chance to compete with the academy teams.

Anonymous said...

I did not say ECNL was perfect, just a league that is trying to set a standard. There are kickball teams everywhere including the vast majority of colleges. I agree that NJ should have another ECNL team, hopefully they will get one. I'm speaking from the MD / VA area so I'm more familiar with the soccer in that area.

But the model is working; at least as far as attracting good players to tryout for ECNL clubs. Hopefully those clubs continue to develop those girls into great players.

As far as drinking the "Cool Aid" like I said I know there are other non ECNL teams out there that play nice soccer, but the overall majority don't play the game as it was intended to be played (including like you said some ECNL teams). With that said, the arguments I keep hearing are based on "expanding" or "swapping" better teams into ECNL not doing away with it? So grab a cup of "Cool Aid" and come join us - the water is warm...

Anonymous said...

12:02 At this point, I think many of the people of this blog have seen a lot of youth soccer. I wonder if you actually took the time to read the articles posted. No one says that the ECNL system does not have good soccer development. The argument by FIFA, UEFA< Jurgen Klinsmann and others is that a close system like the ECNL, and it is closed (just look at NJ, there are about 50 ECNL spots available), is bad for the development of soccer. We know why the ECNL is done this because rather than have a pyramid where anyone can compete, the ECNL has created a funnel to get kids to their programs. It is a simple question I asked previously as well, why does an organization like the ECNL have no independent representation but rather all club heads? The ECNL is good for a few kids, but good for overall soccer development.

Anonymous said...

6:18 actually the ecnl model only appears to be working - the model is not sustainable or suited for long term growth of US soccer. A better description would be "privileged" or "elite", as in Pay to Play. Unless USYS or some large corporation like Nike or Adidas is going to underwrite expenses for families to play in the ECNl, the model will never scale. (And let's not get into a discussion about corporate sponsorships).

It's obvious today - the USA has by far the most resources to throw at it's World Cup teams, yet we are not dominate. You can't buy your way into soccer.

ECNL represents the privileged elite for kids who can afford all the training and travel. And ODP is just as bad in NJ - not singling out ECNL. How many folks can afford the $3K+ ECNL tuition, plus private training and camps, and then the $2500+ ODP expense? This is all for one kid - families with multiple children can multiply that expense x3.

The system is like not scalable and not geared to develop the best - only the wealthiest. In reality, the output if the system is to make things nice and tidy for college coaches to come recruit those who can afford to pay the tuition. In essence.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever looked at ECNL costs and ODP costs in other states? My family is considering a move to GA to follow a job. ECNL costs and ODP costs are 1/3 of what they are here in NJ.

Anonymous said...

You can't argue that ECNL is a closed system, at least geographically. How many gifted girls live in states without ECNL clubs? In the millions I'm guessing. Why limit our chances for a stronger USWNT or D1 program like this?

Anonymous said...

@12:02
I get the terrible impression that never actually take the time to read/understand the arguments of others.

I never blamed ECNL for "all the ills" of present day US soccer development. But its creation certainly exacerbates the problem.
It is a CLOSED system by any reasonable definition. If you can't see that you can't see that.

Any positives from ECNL (and there are some as folks above have pointed out) are done within a vacuum.

We do not have a comprehensive system in the U.S. I have and will continual to blame cronyism for this. Those presently banking on the bucks want to continue to do so and realize that their programs may not be included if more organization were brought to it by the Federation.

As far as any 'kickball' goes. MY GAWD 90% of teams (any level) play it. Even some of the names mentioned above abandon THE GAME until they have a healthy lead in hand.
As a percentage I see almost as much garbage from ECNL teams as I do many of the higher travel leagues. Some have more athletes or are able to 'out-kick' a kick ball team. VERY little commitment to playing the game. That is worth repeating. I will quote a high profile Academy Coach who once told me that "he cannot afford to lose" when in inquired as to why he played a direct game and did not work the ball back to his keeper with any regularity. YIKES!!!

DCShore



Anonymous said...

To the guy who talked about costs in Georgia, while the people at PDA in NJ pay $2500 per year, the costs of the PDA Branch in Florida is $1195 for ages 13-18 and $875 fo ages 11-12. So soccer is a market based economy, price it to what the market will bear. Or are we to assume that PDA in Florida is only half of the quality as PDA in NJ.

Anonymous said...

What a joke. And yet the people keep coming.

Anonymous said...

Ussf created the "closed system" for boys. The clubs simply copied the model for the girls when they saw it as the economic and prestige getter it was for the boys. They proved that you don't need the ussf sanction to have the draw. The difference so far is that ussf have dropped and added DA clubs. For example they dropped Potomac and added Bethesda. They waited years to do this. The ecnl is less mature. Some of the clubs that they might have considered dropping are strengthening with mergers gone wild this year. The landscape (teams) hasn't stabilized in many markets.

The top of the youth soccer pyramid (yes there is one) currently is the ynt. Below that is Bradenton or Europe then DA for boys and ecnl and a few top national level teams for girls.
There won't be a change in the us until the clubs can sell the players they develop and use the funds to further develop players. AJAX is famous for this model. Girls will most likely never be valuable commodities in the market and so will be only able to gather crumbs from the boys as in Barcelona feminine teams.

When the money is in the sale of individual players rather than in winning teams, then we will see a change in development in the us.

Anonymous said...

9:46 / 2:09

I read the articles and do listen to the arguments. Just disagree.

Anonymous said...

Curious what other teams summer practice schedule looks like with HS soccer cranking up. We have practice one day a week and a soccer summer camp (4 days) that the girls are asked to attend.

Anonymous said...

Other so called academies as charging as much as PDA and their training is awful. So don't think that PDA is the most expensive around.
Also some tier 2 and 3 academies offer zero training and exposure but they bill you 2,800 which does not include tournaments.

Anonymous said...

Academies will charge what the market pays.

Like many other things in life 'more money' does not necessarily mean better. 'Less money' does not necessarily mean worse.

Tough for me to come down to hard on any parent based purely on economics. The $250 per season we pay is considered expensive to our sitter team that only costs $150.

Whatever you pay, expectations should be met. Often they are not but that is as much true of the expensive academy teams as it is the lower cost club teams.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

I assume you are paying $250 for fall and $250 for spring? I'm curious what does $250 include? How many practices, what league, uniform, any tournaments or are those extra. What is total cost of the season? That number is very reasonable, what is the coach like?



Anonymous said...

How about the "trainer" fees. How about turf or indoor facilities.

Anonymous said...

I can see now why you seem so shocked at ECNL expenses...

Anonymous said...

$250 is per season and includes league reg, carding and 3 - 4 tournaments per season. 17 players.
Uniforms are extra ($100) but the last set lasted 6 seasons.

Training, one session per week for 10 weeks is $100 but you pay per session. You do not have to pay if you miss.

So, in calculating it out now, instead of just from memory, the average player is paying $350 per season (or $450 if they need a uniform).

Our training indoors is done in schools and there is no charge. Some of our tournaments are indoors.

Financially it works for us but that $350 is actually a full $100 more than the just 12 months ago as the team is competing in more and more tournaments (I have mixed feelings on that). It's a happy group that plays a nice game (heading towards THE GAME hopefully) and is competitive up to a certain level.

If its a matter of "going to North Carolina to play in college or bust" this is not the team for that. If its "I want to learn the game and play at a competitive level so I can play 'somewhere' in college, perhaps more DIII and even DII. Sure ,I think the program and training can get it done and meet this expectation for those that are headed that way.


DCShore

Anonymous said...

I think ECNL costs are frequently exaggerated. My kid's not on an ECNL team and we pay around $2000 per year. That includes 8-10 tournaments, league fees, club fees, and coach/training fees. That does not include travel costs for the players and families. That can run several hundred dollars more (and up) depending on what tournaments we play in. I know of other teams in neighboring clubs that pay upwards of $3000 per year for similar arrangements.

I think the travel for the ECNL teams is what can add up. Depending on where you are, half of your league games will require some form of travel & hotels. Some of the tournaments will be the same, but a few more will require travel.

From some of the information I've seen, there are ECNL teams that are in the $2500 range, plus travel, so it's not really that much different, especially if the ECNL fees include summer camps, which most club team fees don't include.

Anonymous said...

Rider Cup brackets out. Anyone care?

Anonymous said...

Yep, I know of at least one club team that is $900 per season (not in this age bracket). In truth though, that is the only team I know that is even close to this number at a club level. But in truth I know (or care) the very least about the economics of a team.

IMHO and based on their play they are not getting their money's worth. Only the trainer and the numerous tournament organizers would seem to benefit.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

As one person's experience on 2 different clubs, there is little comparison between the two. I'll list out for you the the costs:

$2500 annual fee
Extortionist uniform fees that you must buy from the preferred supplier $600
Winter fundraiser minimum $400
Summer fundraiser $100
"Non-mandatory camps" $400
Coaches "Non-mandatory" side camps $600
2-3 events requiring flights $4000-7000
ECNL Regional League Travel $1500
Other regional tournaments $1500

This may be a little exaggerated but not far off, but I doubt there is a comparison with non-ECNL clubs. I also don't know what world you live in, but a 20% base price increase, $2000 versus $2500 is significant in my book. I'm not complaining, but it is the truth. NPL clubs that are successful won't do much better.

Anonymous said...

Realistically, This is what you can pay if you are smart:

$2500 annual fee
Extortionist uniform fees that you must buy from the preferred supplier $200
Winter fundraiser minimum $75
Summer fundraiser $25
"Non-mandatory camps" $500
Coaches "Non-mandatory" side camps $1000
2-3 events requiring flights $2500-3000
Approx 10-15 overnight hotel stays over the course of an entire season
$1500(greatly reduced by use of points, miles, etc.)

One person's $15000 is another person's $8000. Still a ridiculous amount of money to pay for soccer that isn't even quality soccer. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Yes but I think we agree that $2500 is the tip of the iceberg.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for response DC. It seems like you have found a nice match for your daughter and what your willing to spend for the experience. The current youth soccer structure and all of its choices is not effecting you or your daughters seemingly positive interaction with youth soccer. Well done market place.

I'm personally glad that the soccer market (dictated by consumer demand) has provided an array of choices so that girls and families can pick something they enjoy and can afford. If you were to look at our ECNL cost and had to break it down, the number of times we practice (all year at $2200) I bet the cost per practice is roughly the same. We practice 2-3 (sometimes 4) times a week in season and 1 time a week out of season, plus the $2200 includes a week of soccer camp. Couple that with the fact that we do not have to pay for uniforms, the club has a sponsor.

We play Delco, Jeff Cup, Annandale tourney, Bethesda tourney and a Presidents day tourney. We also travel locally to scrimmage different teams at no additional cost.

ECNL travel is the cost. For us it was to OH / IN twice, Richmond and Greer SC. We qualified for Champions League and that will put us in Seattle so that's an expensive trip. Drove to all the trips but Seattle. Excluding Seattle I have 7 nights in hotel and gas for driving. Lets call it an additional $2000 which includes food. So my ECNL season is $4200 to $4500. We do do fundraisers but the kids do that and they make money to defray the cost lets say my cost is roughly $500 cheaper than the cost I'm giving you. My complaint would be that it is too much soccer and time not too expensive.

That said it is nice that there are alternatives and in most cases girls can find a nice program that both they as a player and a parent who is paying can enjoy.

Anonymous said...

7:49 "I'm personally glad that the soccer market (dictated by consumer demand)" Your post is correct, but you have to wonder whether a market based approach to soccer is good for the development of Youth Soccer or National Soccer. I get the idea that I have worked hard and therefore I can afford to buy a Porsche, it sounds kind of odd when you say it as, I have worked hard and I've earned the right to send my kid to a soccer academy. It's true, but it is a sad state when economics drive whether a kid is afforded all of the opportunities to achieve her full potential. I am glad that we have soccer choices, but I am not glad that we have a market based soccer economy. I think we'd be much better suited to an open system where kids are free to change teams and teams are free to cut and add players based on ability, and having an free academy such as the Red Bulls where the kids that emerge from an open system are invited to camps and potentially to join an academy program. The market economy approach to soccer ensures that only certain kids will continue to develop and grow. There are a ton of kids that view "soccer as life" in Central Jersey Youth Soccer, South Jersey Youth Soccer, and North Jersey Youth Soccer who do not really know about academies and have never been exposed to academies a lot based in large part on economics. Those kids have no less love or passion for the game.

But you post is by and large correct, we just differ on whether that is a good thing.

Anonymous said...

Kids can leave teams and teams can cut players? There is usually a time period like a year but it happens every year for sure. It's nice that the Red Bulls form a few academy teams and pay for it but they can do that because they make money on the professional team. Average attendance is 20,000, compare that to the average attendance of a women's league game (less than 3,000). There is no money in women's soccer its a struggling league. If that is what your hoping for it won't happen. The bottom line - nothing is for free, someone is paying for it, if not you than someone else.

Enjoy the World Cup.

Anonymous said...

Again the European professional academies are free to a few of the players because they are funded by the sale of the players when they become of age ( prime example AJAX) Or conversely from the savings that home grown players bring to club that then doesn't need to budget nearly as much for player purchases ( prime example Barcelona ) These players are ALL obviously boys. The girls get a bone.
Regarding youth development at these academies, all efforts are directed at the development of individual players because the individual players are the economically valuable commodity. The youth teams exist only as a vehicle for individual player development. Hence the results of the youth teams have no value.
Until a club can sell a player as in the rest of the world we will not see a significant change in the us and we will be garnering our youth players for our national teams from those with European passports or from dual nationals. I think there are eight on the us team competing in Brazil.
DC shore you asked me to comment on the European academies. What else do you want to know?
For girls the rest of the world is catching up because the men's programs are throwing bones at the women. The best examples being Japan's residential programs and Olympic Lyon in France

Anonymous said...

Someone is playing for it true, but it is most often not the player's family carrying the full burden of the costs. There is also a culture of soccer that exists around the world that doesn't in the US where kids are always playing soccer, not just at their defined practice time. You may be right, and the systems in the US and Europe may be similar in that someone has to pay for it and in Europe it may be big clubs. In the early to mid-200os it was mandated that Bundesliga teams have academy programs paid for by the clubs and many people associate that with the German resurgence. If you are right than the sad thing for US women's soccer is that the pool of great kids is greatly diminished because the player's family carries all of the cost burden. In Europe that pick the top kids based on who they think has the skill, ability, and athleticism. In the US, we do the same thing, but first you have to pass the hurdle being able to afford it. I'm just speculating, but I think there are few team sports around the world where the best players come from the most economically fortunate of environments.

Anonymous said...

@12:43
You definitely detailed an aspect of the European system (I guess twice now) that has not been previously discussed. Specifically the "buying" of players. No doubt to make it all work this would also be incorporated. As you demonstrated previously this is the incentive for everyone to work together, mostly in concert, and it is only the fans that may moan a bit when their local favorite is traded off.

NO DOUBT, at least in my mind, that an improved US system would need to include this aspect in order to help drive the right behavior.

I would caution the casual reader/observer from thinking (based no your post) that the difference in how the clubs/leagues/teams is set up is simply a matter of who pays the bills.

I do not have the desire to repeat what I have already written.

GREAT perspective provided by you though and something I had not seen brought up before.

As far as the Womens team goes. I'm sorry but despite the pride and joy I got watching our girls pretty much mop up the world for so long I was never fooled into thinking it was great soccer. It was good/very good soccer being played by MONSTER athletes. On a technical level the Japanese have surpassed us. The athleticism is catching up. I see a chasm between many of our USWNT developing. Those with more technical skill/vision, playing with the old guard looking to just service calls at the head level to Abby Wambach who is unmatched in the air. Abby is a tremendous athlete and there may not be another woman on the planet that can do what she does in the air...but I'm not fooled into thinking that makes the USWNT a great team. Just my opinion.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

My previous post was in regard to the highest level kids in Europe. In many European countries the largest mass of kids play for an individual club to which the entire family holds membership. It is truly a social club. Kind of like a country club here in the us in that there is a clubhouse and a cafeteria. There are programs and teams for all ages. Some are more posh than others. Most provide generous scholarships to families so that more children can participate. They have weekend social events around the games. It is a true "club". For the entire family.
My college team stayed with several families belonging to different clubs in holland and we competed against their equivalent aged teams. The facilities are great. 2 or more turf fields and many excellent grass fields. The top men's teams draw support from all if the club members. It is a true social Mecca for the families.
These clubs provide a venue for the best kids to be scouted out for inclusion in the more successful clubs programming as previously detailed.

Those kids selected are truly commodities. There are regulations to avoid abuse but the emotional toll of the q 6 month cuts and replacements can't be quantitated.

Anonymous said...

The success of our WNT is due mostly to the general apathy of the women's game around the world. Still, in many, many countries, women playing sports is frowned upon and our WNT has benefitted from this. I have girls playing soccer. I cannot, with any truth at all, admit to watching really good soccer. I can, however, root like heck for them when they are playing.
Women's soccer, at it's highest level, is marginal at best.

Anonymous said...

@5:05
I cannot say that I have not seen "really good soccer" from time to time. I just not have seen it really often which is a shame.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

You can't look at it like the men's game. Same as women's tennis. A different game but it can be great. Just not the way the us plays it right now.

Anonymous said...

Any one know who is going to the NPL Championships from the NPL and EDP?

Anonymous said...

JFC Storm
Mississippi Fire
Omaha Elite Academy
New Mexico Rush
NEFC
Davis Legacy Millenium
FC Portland
FC Alliance
Space City FC
IE Surf Small
Issaquah Soccer Club/Gunners
FC Stars of Mass


Eastern Development League
NJ Stallions Academy
or
Manhattan SC

Anonymous said...

I was talking with a guy this afternoon and I was told that the U14 Matchfit ECNL team is losing almost 7 girls. He went on to say that he heard the team is falling apart. Is there any truth to this story because I felt that they were just starting to turn the corner.

Anonymous said...

2:21 Sounds like a bit of trolling to me. if your daughter were on the team, you would know and otherwise, your just an outside spectator who spoke to a guy and felt you had to tell everyone on this blog about your conversation with a guy.

I spoke to a guy today who said 50% of the people on the blog were trolls and the other 50% were liars.

Anonymous said...

In the real men of genious category, so FC Virginia is preparing to take a squad of 30 girls and play the following:

1) ECNL
2) Region 1 Premiere or National League
3) State Cup and Region 1 Championship
4) National Premier League

School is optional. Who needs school to play in college. You think SEC football players attend class.

Seriously, would love to see how this is going to work out with a squad of 30 covering so many games across a wide territory.

Hey Gus Donalo makes money, that is all that matters.

Anonymous said...

Don't worry about MatchFit U14 ECNL. Girls from World Class FC will fill out that roster.

Anonymous said...

Is it true WC lost 7 kids

Anonymous said...

James Bond would say, "The World is Not Enough". I guess the Annandale parents don't value ECNL??

They need State Cup, Region 1, and NPL too....

Do these parent really that insecure they are trying to block other kids in Virginia from going to high end league and possibly making showcase tournaments where a college coach might select those girls over the ABGC girls?

Anonymous said...

@2:21pm let me explain to you I am no Troll. Whatever that term means anyway….Let me clarify it to you this way. I am the same guys that say he is a PDA Parent and has been there since my child has been 7 years old. Now if you don’t know who I am then ask and some of your buddies will tell you. Anyway I am still asking that question and WHY…………………because I feel like asking it and to me what I wrote earlier is how I feel and exactly what I said to the guy I was talking to. That team is on the incline and would be awful to New Jersey soccer if that was the case. There are some of my buddies on that team who I cheer for their kids and will continue to cheer for them regardless but I thought it was something that I missed or if it was any truth to that. Now let me get back to “trolling” whatever that is but I just hope that it’s not true because I do like GW a lot as a person.

Anonymous said...

As the famous PDA parent, you know what it is like when people post things on the blog to stir trouble. A troll is someone who goes on a website for no informative purpose but rather to stir issues, so you know very well that it is not great to have your team's business posted on a blog for the world to read and when most of it is gossip-mongering rather than fact.

So you come on a blog and write that you heard from a guy that "the team of falling apart." Now in my personal view and I would think yours who has to deal with a lot of PDAS misstatements, what is the value of coming on a blog an asking "is there any truth to the story," that does nothing but start a rumor and cause problems for a team. "There are some of your buddies on that team' so why not simply email, call, or text something one of your buddies and ask them rather than airing it on this blog where any response has a chance of being just another troll using your statement to then tear apart a team. Maybe your statement was well meaning, but in my view serves no useful purpose.

Anonymous said...

@June 16, 4:14pm sure I know what it is like when people post things about the club my kid is affiliated with. I also know that as long as they aren’t talking about a kid it’s okay to ask question or state what they heard. This is a forum for discussion regardless if we like it or not. I have stated who I am and what team I am affiliated with so I am not hiding behind anything. I am asking a question because maybe some Match Fit posters can set the rumor straight or maybe shed some light on the true story if any. People post stuff about PDA all the time and I defend or try to straight out the lie or rumor as I have in the past. What I am doing is bringing the lie or rumor to the light and see what’s the story. Now if someone has an issue with me doing so then just step to me and say that it’s not true or this is what is going on. Sure I could ask some folks I know which I did and they were unsure because they aren’t in the loop like that. And you make it seem as I am making this guy up that told me this but if you want me to address that the guy has a kid on my younger daughter’s team and doesn’t have a kid that is the age group of U14 I think he has some older kids I think that play for another team not Match Fit or PDA. Yes dealing with the PDA misstatements I address them. Well I am not here to cause a riff between the team I am just asking if what I heard is true. My statement serving as a having no useful purpose……….scroll up and count how many other statements are useful and to me have you address those post as you are addressing mine. Anyway so do we know if my first question is true about Match Fit or not.

Anonymous said...

I don't write that often on the blog, perhaps 10-15 posts in total, but I will tell you a few things that I have posted on, there was a post 6-9 months ago saying a coach was going to be fired and i responded to the poster that I thought it was inappropriate and a blog was not a place to messing with people especially if there was no truth to the rumor (the coach is still in place byt he way), I have posted several times that it is no one's business how much a parent chooses to pay for soccer as it it is an individual's decision to decide the value they are receiving not some nameless person sitting judgment on a blog, I recently asked a question about what people thought about the NPL showcase and whether that will attract coaches and I wrote a post on the open and closed system of soccer, with me believing that an there should be some true open competitions because I feel the current ECNL/System is going to become an insular environment although I think the NPL is more open than the ENCL and i am a parent of a child playing NPL. When I come on here a few times a month, I will respond if I see someone saying something that I think has no useful value except to discuss real or apparent misfortunes of other.

Specifically, what I took issue with in your post and it happened to be the post I read on a day I came on this blog, was your comment, "I heard that they are falling apart," why not just ask, I heard that 7 kids left Match Fit is that true, is that the case? that would be a shame because they seemed to be developing something good.

Anonymous said...

It’s okay to take issue with how I asked the question. Taking issue in how I asked is what this forum is about. You have to be able to take the good with the bad but at least you know and at least you can put a name with the post and certainly a face, which I am okay with also. I am not ashamed on how I asked the question because I said it exactly how it was told to me. Now should I have said it in a more sensible manner………I think not. We are all adults here and I am sure that we can handle the question the way I presented it. If the question offended you then I can easily apologize to you for either hurting your feelings. That I have no problem doing out of respect of you. Do I take back the way I ask the question certainly not….

Anonymous said...

Perhaps I am idealistic and hoped this would be a place to discuss interesting soccer topics. By your own words, you have defined what spreading a rumor is. Essentially you have no responsibility for what you post because it was something that was told to you whether true or not. I personally view that as not acting like an adult. I'm glad I do not come on here as much as you because while we are all adults, I'd hope that we would have good soccer dialogue rather than simply spreading rumors. We differ in that you think as an adult it's perfectly OK to spread rumors because it's an adult conversation and "I was just spreading was I was told." Can you just imagine how much worse things would be if everyone just came on here an wrote what they were told about one team or another.

Anonymous said...

I think your idealism is perfect for this blog. And you are correct that you should be able to discussing interesting soccer topics. I just happen to think that Match Fit is an interesting topic of conversation right now. I don’t think that I am spreading rumors but I can assume that you are from Match Fit and that’s why what I ask is bothering you. My question was not to spread a rumor it was to ask the simple question as if what was told true. You could have come to the rescue and say hey PDA parent its not true and that’s a rumor but no you haven’t which makes me believe that you don’t know either and that’s okay because that is why I am asking to find out. This was a soccer question pertaining to a team that makes up the New Jersey landscape of youth soccer at this age group. We most certain differ in our opinions on how we approach things, but also its doesn’t mean that I am less of an adult than you are. Hey but then again you are entitled to your opinion and I respect it but I disagree. In my terms spreading a rumor would mean that I would have to go to someone else and say “HEY DID YOU HEAR THAT MATCH IS BREAKING UP”…….that would be spreading a rumor if it was untrue. I asked a question and that is clear from my first post about this and will remain the same and that is what I asked. Is it true or isn’t it. I would sure hope not and only wish and hope that the Match Fit parent that told the guy that I know is just over reacting or just unhappy and was upset at the moment when he said it.

Anonymous said...

Do you think it's time that US Club Soccer starts to rethink it's National Cup. It was filled with higher level teams in previous years, it seems it's mostly a second/third tier tournament at U-14 for teams to compete in a regional/national tournament?

Anonymous said...

Soccer talk has been tried (and will be tried again) but I have the suspicion that there are 3-4 parents dedicated to talking about how great team XYZ is, how bad ABC, and how "they heard..." something nasty about another team.

BORING

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Hey NOVA any news about McLean and FC VA? Saw Gus listed as a coach for FC VA but did not see anything about Harkes coaching for McLean. Did FC VA replace their rising U15 team with ABGC's, including Gus? What about Chantilly did they fold up shop and move to McLean?

Anonymous said...

Not wiped out, more than half the players are still on the team. But Gus has brought in more players who play direct style. So looks like FCV is going to allow Gus to play Gus Ball and at the expense of player development.

Harkes is coaching Mclean U16 ECNL. She can't coach her daughter who made the team despite than a less than stellar tryout. Must be nice to have a parent in power.

FCV has Foley's daughter and Mclean has Harke's daughter.

Anonymous said...

Considering how FCV appears to be unable to retain many quality coaches in the area - not sure how long Gus is going to last in that organization.

The plan appears to be bring in Gus and the team. See if he can be a model citizen. If not, get rid of him and hope the Premiere parents want the lure of ECNL over Gus. But FCV has enough girls in the system that if Harkes 2.0 occurs with Gus they have enough to at least field a team off the NPL team and the non-Premier players on the ECNL team.

Anonymous said...

Maybe that explains why Premiere is unwilling to give up State Cup/Region 1 Premiere League in the Fall. Both sides are hedging their bets in case this falls apart.

FCV still has enough players for a team.

ABGC still has a spot to go if Gus is fired.

Anonymous said...

Region 1 Championship sure looks water down with the top teams and players playing ECNL. What a waste of money and time surely the writing is on the wall.

Anonymous said...

Region 1 Championship sure looks water down with the top teams and players playing ECNL. What a waste of money and time surely the writing is on the wall.

Anonymous said...

Since we are on NPL - below is the lineup for the u14 FINALS.


New Jersey Stallions
JFC Storm
Mississippi Fire
Omaha Elite Academy
New Mexico Rush
NEFC
Davis Legacy Millenium
FC Stars of Mass
FC Portland
FC Alliance
Space City FC
IE Surf Small
Issaquah Soccer Club/Gunners

Anonymous said...

@June 18 9:54am WHOA….the name calling. This is the PDA Parent………I will get back to that but wait you ain’t even real and your surely ain’t universal you whole style that you wrote sounded like an old N’Sync commercial. Ignoramus you challenging me like what I said was so offensive or so taboo to even mention. Makes me completely understand who is writing all the nonsense about PDA now. I ask one question and all of a sudden I got you on your hands and knees. I never said that Match Fit was breaking up I denied that to the gentleman that I was talking to but I was asking if maybe it was true and me hoping and wishing it wasn’t true maybe farfetched. You call me cowardly…….please son, your conversation is limited like the speed of traffic on this subject. It’s like I am listening to the radio and your trying to repeat what someone said but you better believe I hear the static. All of this is ridiculous over a simple question. You and the guy that thinks he knows everything and believes that he knows all the issues to US soccer because he lived or been over to Europe with the SHORE in his name need to chill out. Just as I told him that reflection in the mirror is going to hurt when you look at it. Back to that name calling. As a young kid my grandmother always told me that people will always call you names son but don’t worry they are like the little dog up on the porch barking because the big dog is walking by on the other side of the fence. My grandmother said hey Eric if you want to see the real coward just open the gate and see if the little dog will come off the porch. The moral of the story is that you should never call someone names or assume someone is something that they are not. More importantly I am Eric Harris who are you by the way since we are talking but I can assume that half of the people in this forum assume the PDA parent was me all along because of my writing style and language. I am still asking the question now is what I heard true or false. Now you have a name with who is asking a simple question………be careful because that reflection in the mirror will tell you the truth about if you are who you are. Again I am Eric Harris

Anonymous said...

He doth protests too much.

Anonymous said...

He doth insane.

Anonymous said...

I think the region 1 championships are fine. The kids work hard and need something to strive for. I agree the teams are not as good as the teams in the ecnl national finals in Seattle next week but they will compete just the same

Anonymous said...

It seems that the Major tournaments will be better than these "Championships" in determining the true best team. The ECNL is a mixed bag. As an example WC and PDA Gunners are undoubtedly 2 of the best teams in the region and their ECNL grouping, but the quality drops off al lot from there. What does the NPL championship tell you, for the most part it is made up of 2nd teams of ECNL Clubs which has made for very poor competition in the Northeast, but in Mass. you have an ECNL level team in the NEFC playing NPL. In their NPL division they were undefeated with with very little competition. The great thing about the USYS Championships is the knockout nature where every game is important, it's a great competition and any team that gets through it have a lot to be proud of, but it is not the competition it once was. You also have the National CUp which seems to the next level down of teams that were not good enough in their NPL or CLub leagues but still want to try to compete in a National Tournament.

Anonymous said...

8:39

A simple question is "did so and so win today?" Using the phrase "I heard that...? is a commonly known Weasel Word because "Weasel words are designed to give the appearance of truth whilst protecting the speaker from attack...."

An of course that is what happened, you were called out for using a Weasel Word and you felt protected because it was a "Simple question."

For the record, you have been prolonging this agreed ridiculous discussion by adding long diatribres.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of NPL, the new Virginia Premiere League is less than impressive. Courtland, Chesterfield, and Cheseapeake are hardly top flight competition.

My suggestion is to add the top non CCL teams from NOVA: Herndon, Vienna, Chantilly to replace the three clubs from Southern Virginia.

Anonymous said...

The Region 1 championship looks to have a good representation of Northeast teams. I see at least 7 very good quality clubs listed at u14. These teams can play with anyone with the exception of a few top ECNL teams.
NEFC
ABGC
PA Strikers
Empire
Quickstrike
Century
YMS

NEFC and ABGC will knock one another out in pool play. PA Strikers has the easy road. Other 2 brackets are a toss up.

Anonymous said...

Why does everyone assume that all the best kids play ECNL. Granted, their level of talent is high, but for my daughter, she has no interest in going far to college. D1 locally. She could make and start on an ECNL team I'm certain, but doesn't need to go to Seattle, San Diego, etc...to play soccer. SO we CHOOSE to not play ECNL. I love the program, but it is naive to think that the best are there and everyone else drops off dramatically talent wise. Simply not true.

Anonymous said...

Every NPL league game is important. As the champion represents the league at the NPL finals. Starts in September and ends in June.

Yes ECNL B teams plus some other tough teams.

NEFC ELITE U14 GIRLS NPLNORTH ROCKLAND STING ROWDIES
MANHATTAN SC MANHATTAN SANTOS
QUICKSTRIKE FC 00'S (starting in the Fall)
ISA ELITE 99 NPL
SMITHTOWN KICKERS SC HOTSPUR
NJ STALLIONS STAMPEDE
FC COPA ACADEMY MILAN
NJSA 04 BULLDOGS YELLOW
AZTEC SOCCER U14 GIRLS NPL
SOUTH JERSEY ELITE BARONS '99
BAYSIDE FC BOLTS 99/00

and some (6) are in the Region Championships.

BAYSIDE FC BOLTS 99/00 (RI)
NEFC ELITE U14 GIRLS NPL (MA)
FSA FC U14 GIRLS NAVY (CT) (we'll see if these team goes NE Girls NPL as Soccer + B team)
QUICKSTRIKE FC 00'S (NYE)
FC COPA ACADEMY MILAN (NJ)

Anonymous said...

5:20 You are correct not all the best kids - all the kids that want to be the best and a national Champion.

Anonymous said...

The Mid Atlantic National Cup brackets? Seriously, what a joke!

Anonymous said...

5:20 Yes every game is important, but it is not awin or out proposition. The other difference is that if you look at the NPL Northeast teams going to the NPL finals, NEFC and FC Stars had virtually no competition. The only team that threatened FC Stars was were the PDA Pride and NEFC was never challenged.

Anonymous said...

Didn't we say referencing specific names was a classless move to do? Shame, DCShore.
I happen to know the person you mentioned, and I honestly doubt he engages in "tabloid soccer talk", unless you count defending his own child's team from haters (I mean, everyone hates PDA, right?)as an offense.

Anonymous said...

Don't blame DC Shore He named himself a few posts back.

Anonymous said...

12:12 I think you have it wrong. The PDA Guy went on a long diatribe. blah blah blah, dogs barking, shine the light, look at the reflection, name yourself, show your face, grandmother quotes etc, twice emphatically saying I am the PDA Parent named XXXXXX, DC was just responding to the PDA Guy naming himself. I believe especially a guy playing for a club that is often maligned on this board is being tabloid when he states "I heard this team is falling apart, is it true?"

Anonymous said...

He doth protests too much again and again and again.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of soccer, aren't we all the better that the World Cup is not a closed sytem of Elite clubs. Spain's out, England's likely out, Portugal has a lot of risk. The US has a good chance to going through, Costa Rica is likely through, and a few other surprises. It certainly speaks to the value of deciding soccer games on the pitch not in a board room.

Anonymous said...

1:39 UEFA Champions League.

Why does England, Spain and Italy to name a few get to send 4 teams some directly into the group stage while Malta's champion has to qualify by winning 3 rounds before they even get to the group phase?

Yes it's not closed but it's make it hard for Valletta doesn't it? Is that fair?

Anonymous said...

I'm not educated enough on the UEFA. Qualifying except as you say, they big leagues send 4. I personally don't have an issue of a higher bar for teams playing in weaker leagues at least there is a system for teams to qualify. The World Cup does show the beauty of every country having a path for qualification. I think you know my broader point which is that I believe that we have more an more in youth soccer isolating leagues where decisions on who goes in and who doesn't is done in board rooms of people with a vested interest in the outcome. Because teams are moving to playing US Youth or US Club events, I think we are losing some of the excitement of some like the state cups where if you come out of that, you play regional competition, and then a national competition. I personally think there is something great about that structure.

Anonymous said...

Some shocking early exits. I think many here can agree.
In Spain's case many are celebrating the death of Tiki-Taka but can that really be said? Spain had won essentially all that is worth winning for four years. Four years is a lifetime in soccer and I think the flame (or with some the fuel) that drove many of the players engines is gone. By all accounts Spain has a strong bench of developing players so it should not be long before we see.

I think the problem on the English side is the growth and strength of the EPL. Simply put its success may be at the detriment of its domestic development. Much of the English square, at least on paper, is the "who's who" of the EPL. At the same time many of the EPL teams these domestic players belong too are greatly thickened up by international talent. When the English squads get together I find a complete lack of cohesion and purpose. They almost have a "let's get out there and see what we can do" mentality.

What do you all think?

DCShore

Anonymous said...

I do understand your point and I think US Club soccer is going down that path. They are setting up a pyramid - what they do with that pyramid remains to be seen. US Club has standards it wants it's member clubs to have, agree or disagree with it at least they are trying to take out the hacks. For every PA Strikers you have 2 to 3 clubs just taking on registrations to make a buck or two. Just to give you an example with some money. The Wildwood beach blast charges about $700 a pop for about 1,000 teams to play in a weekend of sand soccer. That's a lot of money to play on the sand being made. The Hotels and Food joints all gain from this as well. Not saying this is a scam - but we have hundreds of events and with tools like gotsoccer that glorify the events - you can see how development and playing soccer kind of takes a back seat sometimes when you have all this money to be made.

I think an Open Soccer Pyramid would be great

MLS & NWSL D1
NASL & W-League D2
USL Pro & WPSL D3
merge PDL/NPSL & ECNL D3
US Club Soccer Pyramid D4 (NPL, PL, Travel)

In order to play you need to have standards met. Also if you do this and improve on the "homegrown" player rule there will be no need for a College Soccer draft. Teams will simply just purchase the rights to players from smaller clubs this would drive down the Fees us parents pay.

Then soccer in our country would be open to everyone while eliminating the hacks - every child that is serious will have one path not 3 or 4 all promising the same thing. I'm no expert but i do love the game.

Spain has won majors the lat 6 years - Euro + World Cup + Euro. I don't think they are done I think they just had a bad two games which unfortunately for them came at the wrong time. I disagree about the EPL as I can only wish the same would happen to the MLS.

One last thing on US Soccer - In addition to an Open League - we need to play in major club events. Why not ask to join Copa Lib and send our top 3 or 4 teams to that event and then send teams 5 through 8 to CONCACAF Champions league or have the NWSL petition UEFA to join their Champions League with our games being played at a neutral site. Now you have opened a path for more clubs to make money and more players to be exposed to big leagues until the MLS becomes the place to be I think it's a lot easier for the NWSL to become the global league.

Personally, i think the USSF dropped the ball with the NWSL. They had the WPSL Elite. WPSL has over 60 clubs, they could have forced the W-league to merge back with the WPLS and let US CLub soccer into the equation to build an open league for the Women.

But we will never see that in our world of closed leagues NFL, MLB, NHL & NBA to much money being made and at the end of the day it's always about the money isn't it?

Anonymous said...

Sorry had some typos.

MLS & NWSL D1
NASL & W-League D2
USL Pro & WPSL D3
merge PDL/NPSL & ECNL D4
US Club Soccer Pyramid D5 (NPL, PL, Travel)

Anonymous said...

@8:50
Sadly, any such changes you mention would be met with resistance by those already bringing in the $. It's a threat. But I do like the way your thinking is going. It would be VERY exciting to see some of that in action.

We pretty much agree on Spain, though perhaps I am putting more emphasis on the decline of their aging players. We can agree to disagree about the EPL. It's just a sad day (Cup) for England getting bounced so early.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Anyone at Rider Cup this past weekend? Any interesting games, results?

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I have not been able to catch any outside matches the past couple of weeks and with my kids schedules done I am likely not to see any soccer till Fall.

I would love to hear some good stuff about any matches anyone catches. Any teams to watch for? Any interesting playing styles of formations.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

What does everyone think of the following currents u14G teams
NJSA04
Matchfit
PDA
Wildcats
FC Copa

Which of these offer the better training and player's development. HOw are the coaches in this age group and how expensive are these teams?

Anonymous said...

@9:33
You'll get a lot of disagreement on "which offers better XYZ..."

In truth I do not know the Wildcats team. I have not seen them play.

With regards to the other teams it is my opinion that no matter which you are looking at you will good/very good quality in terms of team play/training (which mostly go hand in hand). If you daughter were to play on any of the teams (including the various PDA squads) you 'should' be happy with what you see in terms of development. Again, all of it is good/very good.

My best advice, which I admit is tougher this time of year, is to watch the teams play. Win/Lose/Draw are they playing a quality match? How are the coaches on the sidelines? How are the parents? Would you be happy being associated with such a group?

How expensive is it? Depends on what you deem 'expensive' is. While some of the feeds are far above what some parents might pay others might be considered a bargain. Ultimately I would not judge the program on price tag alone (positively or negatively).

Whether you join an academy or club team should be based on CLEAR expectations. Whether you stay should be based on whether your expectations are met.

Best answer I can give at the moment.

DCShore

Anonymous said...

Should read,
"While some of the fees are far above what some parents might pay...."
DCShore

Anonymous said...

Reading this blog, I would avoid Match Fit, I hea they are falling apart. The same people discuss the special envronment that exist at PDA.

My sense is that any one of those clubs can be a good fit depending on what you are looking for. You will find the least stability at the ECNL clubs if your daughter is not in the starting or first sub grouping as you will likely continue to see turnover at the bottom The ECNL clubs have a lot of pressure on them to win now.

Anonymous said...

PDA beats up on Bethesda first day of ECNL finals 3-1. Keep deluding yourselves that your kid's team could compete with them. Yet they probably will have a serious challenge against the best in the country CSA, Colorado, Texas and the west coast's best. Wish them luck as they represent Northeast ECNL and NJ.

Anonymous said...

PDA is the best....Yeah!!!!

Anonymous said...

...At leasr in NJ

Anonymous said...

PDA Gunners 3
Charlotte 1

Keep it up Northeast

Anonymous said...

PDA Gunners beats Charlotte (#1 seed) today in Seattle at U14 ECNL Playoffs. Tomorrow PDA plays Santa Rosa who lost to Charlotte 4-1. Gunners should advance out of their bracket undefeated and play in the semi-finals on Friday.

Anonymous said...

World class having a tough tournament going 0-1-1 after a stupendous regular season. Won't advance to next round.

Anonymous said...

Offense gets attention, but defense wins championships!

Anonymous said...

The World Cup can be lost in the group stage but not won and the draw also matters.

True about defense, but I also believe that the best defense is a great offense.

Anonymous said...

Our team is breaking up due to coach's lack of training and development. Also five players were treated like crop on this team. A large group of the parents decided to take their kids some place else where they can get appropriate training. eight players are leaving out of 16 so the team will probably bring in other victims and continue to vicious cycle.

Anonymous said...

@4:38
How long had the roster been together?
My guess there were warning signs long before this season, no?

Plenty of teams looking for players this time of year. The shrinking and consolidation has begun. A few teams keep it all intact but any go through changes at this age.


DCShore

Anonymous said...

This team has player turnover every year because only 11 players play, the rest just pay and watch the main players play. Some players only played 5 minutes the entire game, others 10-15 minutes a half. It's just a money making team no development at all. Waste of time!!

Anonymous said...

Teams going to NPL championship in Greensboro NC

EDP NPL - NJ Stallions
NYCSL - NEFC

Anonymous said...

4:38 Are you referencing Colonial League member LMVSC (Virginia). They were breaking up. Lost 5 girls to another club. Now I hear they are trying to have a team.

Anonymous said...

So I was watching World Cup commentary about how difficult it would have been for the US to come back from 3 days rest having played in the Amazon. Then I thought PDA may play up to 5 games over a 4 day period, the same thing with playing in the Jefferson Cup and really any other tourneys. Does anyone else think it is nuts that 3 days rest is considered difficult for adults to play 2 world cup games but our kids will play 5 in a weekend. I think it says something about the US Soccer culture.

Anonymous said...

ECNL is more like 5 games in 6 days if you make it to the final, with a day of rest in between.
Tournament formats of 4 games in two days or 5 games in three days is the worst of many downfalls of US youth soccer. Just like everything else in this sport, it's all about the money.

Anonymous said...

World Class, welcome to ECNL.

Anonymous said...

@9:22
What does it say about U.S. soccer culture? What are you implying?

Do you think European youth club teams play 5 games in 4 days? or 4 games in 2 days?

Is this another 'telling' statement that we all have to figure out?

DCShore

Anonymous said...

0-2 loss to solar.....oh well....no wins in seattle and a -4 goal differential. Defense and goal keeping exposed giving up 10 goals in 3 games

back to reality....it was fun while it lasted....RIP WCFC U14s

Anonymous said...

DC Shore, no I do not think European teams play 4-5 games over a weekend. I am not implying, I am saying that we make the measure of a team how well the do on a weekend in NJ, VA, PA, Mass, etc. I am saying that Wins are more important than development, and I am saying that we grind 14 year olds. Who hasn't seen a girl that has an an ACL tear. I don't remember girls having the number of injuries that they have today. I have commented previously and I am sure that you know this, that the training to game ratio in the US is half of what it is in Europe.

Anonymous said...

The cream rises to the top. Go gunners,,,go PDA!!

«Oldest ‹Older   1 – 200 of 995   Newer› Newest»