www.youthsoccer101.com
 

There Is No Avoiding it-TRYOUTS ARE COMING!

Coaches, parents, administrators & players dread this time of the year.  Rumors are flying of who is leaving the team, where they are going & why they are leaving.  Parents are running their child from tryout to tryout to make sure they have a team to play on.  It is utter chaos for administrators who are trying to figure out if there will be enough players to form a team.  Coaches are wondering “what they did wrong to cause these players to look elsewhere?” 

Unfortunately, this is what is going on today in many clubs throughout the country.  All these factors work against youth soccer players and the soccer clubs. I have a few ideas to help make this a better experience for everyone involved. 

Ages U8-U10- this is a critical age for learning and development.  If your team provides good training and a fun atmosphere, more often than not the majority of the team will stay together.   Of course, you will get the parent that feels their child is the next Messi - let them go.  Your team will be better off in the long run. 

Ages U11-U13- All hell breaks loose.  State cup winning teams break apart and mid to lower level teams cannot seem to find enough players to keep the team together.  In my opinion this is where surrounding town clubs need to work together in a collaborative effort so that travel players have a proper place to play based on their ability.  Many town clubs cannot offer a variety of different level teams in each age group to support the varying skill levels of their players.  It just comes down to numbers.  A town may have a strong team in one age group leaving out a few mid level players that have been pulled along on this team for a few years getting minimal playing time.  There is a good chance a surrounding town team has an appropriate level for the mid level players to join.  It is not about poaching players it is about providing the correct fit for the player.  I feel it is the responsibility of each club to make sure they help every interested player find a place to play. 

Ages U14 & Up- Middle school and High School soccer starts to interfere with the travel team fall season.  Don’t fight it-embrace it.  The players love playing for their school team.  Cut your travel practices down during the school season and limit tournament play.  Consider eliminating the fall travel season all together and pick things up after the school season ends.  At this point you should be working with other towns to keep the team together as players begin to focus on one sport or lose interest so you may need an influx of out of town players to keep the team together.  You may even be joining forces with your arch rival? 

The tryout process will never be easy, but by working together with the surrounding clubs in your area to provide the opportunity for players to play at an appropriate level, both the club and the player will benefit.  Start an open dialogue with surrounding town clubs now so that when tryouts take place you have options for the players on your team.

(Tyler Isaacson is a club president, travel coach, recreation coach, youth player, college player and dad. He has 30 years of playing and coaching experience and is founder of youthsoccer101 an online coaching development tool used by over 100,000 coaches nationwide. He can be reached at tyler@youthsoccer101.com)

____________________________________________________________________________________________________


footskills training


Must Read

Coach

What is a US Soccer Development Academy?


"How Did I Get Stuck With All The Weak Players?"

s Skipping High School Worth It?

Perception vs. Reality

6 Reasons Parents Should Not Watch Practice


Youth Sports Specialization Defies Logic

My 9 Year Old Is A Forward

Tournament Play

  Important Coaching Tool

Get A Team Manager

Tips On How To Write A Practice Plan


"The Good Side Of The Field"

Guide To Playing Soccer In College

"Learn from losing"

"How coaches' mouths lose games"

"Your mood matters"

"Let the kids drive"

"NIghtmare sports parent"

"I am a volunteer coach!"

"Getting  players to pay attention"


footskills training
 
Parents


What is a US Soccer Development Academy?

Is Skipping High School Worth It?

6 Reasons Parents Should Not Watch Practice

 Youth Sports Specialization Defies Logic

My 9 Year Old Is A Forward

I Am Done!

Tim Howard Advice For Keepers, Parents & Coaches

"Specializing In One Sport As A Child"

Guide To Playing Soccer In College

"10 Things A Parent Sho
uld Know"

"What, I am on the B Team?"

"For Kids Only"

"The Ride Home: Not a Teachable Moment"

"Parents perspective"

"NIghtmare sports parent"

Play
ers

Guide To Playing Soccer In College

Klinsmann "It's driven by you"

"It Should Be A Reunion"