Developing Players to Play Beautiful Football
Updated: Jun 16, 2019
Head Coach & Boys Director
May 21, 2019
I write this letter with sincerity and I hope that I can help CHANGE and IMPROVE the perception towards how a player is developed. This letter comes after countless years of learning, studying, and most importantly EXPERIENCING. One of the reasons I enjoy coaching so much is that I get a great personal satisfaction when I see that someone is improving and understanding a game that to me is everything.
I have the privilege to coach this amazing game on a daily basis and work with hundreds of players every year. With plenty of pride and respect, I can say that I coach everything from the best player in the state to a player who is new and a beginner. Now, there are many coaches who are quick to say “I made that player,” or “I developed that player.”
There are two players I coach currently who are probably the top 2 players in the state in their given age group. I have had the privilege to work with them since 2012. Because I have worked with them for so long I should be telling the world that I have made that player right? Wrong. I can say that I have influenced them and provided an opportunity for them to continue growing and improving as not only soccer players but as good human beings as well. I certainly am aware that I have not “made that player.” The main reason those two players are where they are today, is because of their culture at home. Who determines the culture at home? You. The parent.
Just yesterday one of those 2 players comes up to me, “Coach I beat my record, I did 209 today.”
“Legend! Great job bro, now you have to beat 209 because you hold the record!” I replied.
Why did he get 209 juggles? How did he get there? Was it because of his club? His coach? Certainly not. We merely spend 2-3 minutes once in a while working on our juggling. He got 209 juggles because he has spent countless hours at home with a ball trying to improve. Maybe I helped persuade and influence the player to juggle, but I am certainly not the reason why he has perfected juggling.
Where am I going with this? Many are quick to talk about a program, criticize, and even blame, when in reality, they are not the ones to blame. When you join a program, the program is there to provide structure and an environment where the player can learn and have fun. If your kid is not good enough, don't blame the system. Instead, see what you can do to help improve the system, but most importantly start off by investing time at home with your kid. You want your kid to be good? Here’s a rule of thumb: It takes 10,000 hours to master a craft. I dont know of any club in this world that provides services that sum up to 10,000 hours.
When I look back in my career, I had many coaches, some influenced me more than others, some helped me improve more than others, but this game, I learned to love and play because it was part of my culture at home.
All the best,