Thursday, May 13, 2010

AFU Classic

You win some and you loose some. But we did play four games with a partial team. One of our forwards was on loan to an older age group, the other was in NY. One key player got hurt and another got sick. Sunday we show up for our forth game in two days with no subs and the sun baking down on us. This was a test of will power just to complete the game. We scored early and tired trying to keep the pressure on. By half we were down 2-1. The second half we had to slow the game down or we would be walking to the goal picking the ball out. Well we did that anyway, giving up two more goals and finding ourselves out of energy and down on our luck. So we slowed the game down taking our time on restarts and lulling our opponents to sleep. With about ten minutes to go we found a spark, scored two goals and pushed hard the rest of the way. I am proud of the boys for never giving up and almost turning the game around.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

How was the Alabama trip? - Parent feedback

They looked so good!  They came out a little tentative at first, but found their confidence very quickly.  They dominated play in every game.  They controlled the ball very well, they spread the field well, they communicated very well and their defense was strong. Walker got to play forward for a little bit in his last game and looked VERY good.  He came within an inch of scoring!  I’m sure you heard, but the teams won every game they played.  I was very impressed with how well they came together in spite of all the practice rain-outs and long periods between practices.  Our coaching staff all seem to be very good at teaching throughout the game-in-progress.
Also the parent conduct rules made a big positive difference on the sidelines too.  I wasn’t sure what to make out of the requirement to remain mostly quiet during the games, but I am now a big believer!  The contrast between the Georgia parents and the Alabama parents (who apparently are not held to the same rules) was HUGE.  I’m certain that our kids played a little bit better without all the yelling and sideline-coaching.
We missed having you there.  All us parents got way too much sun and were exhausted at the end of the day.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

98 ODP rocks Alabama

I was all the way to Talladega Superspeedway when my son called with the news. Sundays games are cancelled. GA ODP's travelled first class in Motor Coaches to Decatur AL for an sub-regional event. Walkers age group includes three teams and they won all seven games on Saturday.
Great job boys. More details to come.

AFU Fire vs Concorde Fire

Saturday I coached 5 games against Concorde Fire, including U10, U11 & U12. All 5 games included, we outscored them 17 to 7. The U10 boys rocked the house with an easy opening game, 6-0. Their second game was much more challenging. We could not dribble and hold the ball without immediate pressure. In the end we adjusted & won 4-0. My U11's had a more difficult time with the Concorde Central team. Very physical and fast paced. I thought we handled it well as our style of play is much more on the ground vs. first touch in the air and into space. Both styles are effective but kick and run makes for an ugly game. We lost 2-0 which is a huge improvement on our last game with this team. Our keeper played outstanding even though he miss judged a 45 yard kick and pray shot on goal. Those types of goals don't happen too often as keepers mature. Many of the same concorde players played our U12 Bronze which may be why they are very physical and fast paced having to play against older players too. We ended the day with a barn burner 4-3 victory for my same U11's which should give them a vote of confidence going into the break.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

ODP Alabama

This will be a big weekend for Walker. He is taking a trip to Decatur Alabama to play in an ODP Subregional soccer event where Georgia's  three teams will play ODP teams from Alabama and Tennessee. They will travel on a chartered bus, no parents other than coaches and chaperones. ODP is very strict about parent behavior and parent involvement. They want the boys to play at a high level, making decisions themselves, and not playing like a pupet on strings listening to parents screaming and cheering. 

This may be difficult for me since I am used to coaching young kids. But I have been practicing and so should you. It is best to cheer them on after they do something good, not give them specific instructions like "shoot it" or "pass it" or "Go, Go, Go". They will learn to think and find options and soccer is very much a thinking game. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

U11 Boys at RYSA Spring Kick Off Classic

We started out strong against Trussville United from Alabama winning 2-1 but peppering the goal with nearly 20 shots. The second game vs. RYSA our boys decided to give them a two goal lead from the locker room. Not mentally focused and a bit confused by our formation they looked like cones for the first five minutes. They adjusted and played better but could not finish when we needed it. Third game we dominated play against PR Lions. The Lions could have actually one the game with a missed penalty kick and some outstanding play from their keeper. We had at least three goals and numerous opportunities called back due to offsides calls. We need to fix that for sure. It was a good warm up to get the season started.

U10 Boys at RYSA Spring Kick Off Classic

We played two games under the lights, which really adds to the atmosphere. 
The boys made it to the finals by defeating RYSA 4-3, playing to a 2-2 tie with a strong Macon team. Then defeating Inter Atlanta 4-1. Our schedule claims we played Galaxy instead of RYSA but we know better. That game we had our way with them and were able to experiment with playing out of the back. Cost us a couple of goals but it helped us in the other games to get play started quickly with control of the ball. The finals did not go well. We gave up a couple of quick goals and had to bite and scratch to get back in the game. Several chances were near misses and could have leveled the game. The second half went better when the referee took more control of the game. He actually apologized to me for his first half performance. He called the game very one sided and admitted it after the fact. The boys fought hard, never gave up and adjusted well to the different style of play of a very quick attack oriented team.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Three games of interest last night.

First my U10 Silver scrimmaged my U11 Silver in 8v8 format. U10's played well and scored first. U11's came back strong and began to break down the U10's defense toward the end. U10's normally play 6v6 so it is not easy to stay organized without experience.

Next Up: Peachtree Ridge Girls JV lost 1-0 to North View. The first half was dominated by Northview with PRHS goal keeper making a miraculous save that surely would have been a goal.
Second half saw PRHS create a lot more chances but just couldn't finish. 

Lastly US vs El Salvador: Great game by the US who gave up a goal on a defensive error. It took them all of 91 minutes to regain the lead. Two great goals and several chances by the US gave them the lead in the end winning 2-1, in Tampa. 

Next UP: US vs Netherlands

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

USA vs El Salvador

Don't forget to watch USA vs El Salvador tonight at 7:00 on ESPN CLASSIC.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Indoor Soccer

So we played the top team in the Coed league on Sunday. They where fast, young, aggressive and very good with the ball. They really started to loose their cool when they found themselves down 5-1 at half time. Yellow cards, two minute penalties led to a fight and two ejections. We lost our to best players, one to injury and the other to the red card. We held them off the best we could. In the end they tied us 5-5. Crazy game.

Highschool soccer

Tomorrow is McKenna's first High school game. I think she will do fine, even though she is a bit nervous. HS Teams are usually a mix of rec. and select players all used to playing at different levels of play. McKenna has played against some of the best players in GA at State Cup the last two years. This past fall she played on a mid level team with in our club. She needs to continue the hard work on her fitness, speed and power to get back to the A level. I will say she worked every hard in the fall and now she is working out at school in PE, Body Sculpting and soccer practice, every day.
Good luck Macky.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Parent feedback

This was our final session with the U10 WINTER  and I got some really good feedback.

One parent said "My child showed more improvement in six sessions then they did in three months with an Academy team. They started practice outdoors and she looked like a new player."

Another said "We had previously tried a similar program but it was not nearly as good as Soccer Dynamics. Your style of coaching and the things you teach will help them immediately."

"I really believe in learning the fundamentals. Your coaching is more valuable than actual game experience with your average recreation coach."

All the U10's showed good improvement, but there is always work to do. I often get players that come back a year later with bad habits and less skill than when they left. If they are lucky (1 out of ten) or if they join the academy somewhere, they will get good coaching. 

ODP training tonight for my son Walker and then Super Y tryouts tomorrow. Wish him luck!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Foul Weather

Soccer Fields were closed at AFU. My Academy practices were cancelled. It has been tough to get in outdoor practices last season and so far this preseason. Might be a good time to sign up for additional training at Soccer Dynamics where we practice rain or shine. Indoor space is available, and the extra practice can compliment your outdoor team practices.

Our next six week soccer clinic runs Feb 23-April 3.

Monday, February 15, 2010

my Soccer Experience Blog

Hi everyone,

Thought I would start a blog about my youth soccer experience as a parent of three talented players, coaching director of Soccer Dynamics and coach of two youth Academy teams. 

We will start with last nights game. I play on a coed indoor team with my two daughters, age 14 and 17. Although we play in the 3rd division, we play against adults young and old, current and former college players, as well as some very athletic but somewhat inexperienced players. 

Our team consists of four dads and their kids, and a few friends and relatives. Nothing brings me more joy than watching my kids play. We have been chasing their games around Atlanta, most of Georgia and a lot of the southeast for the past 12 years.

But actually playing with them is special. Last night we beat Los Pitufos 18-2, they were very good but had to play short handed because no girls showed up. You must reserve two spots for girls at all times. On an even playing field we may be in trouble.

Scoring is still as fun as ever, and I can shoot way better now than I could as a young adult. Teaching helps improve technique, and proper technique makes all the difference.

Till next time