We’re not developing risk-averse robots, right?

Author: James

Lifelong player and student of the beautiful game in Germany, England, and USA. Volunteer futsal coach and USSF referee.

2 thoughts on “We’re not developing risk-averse robots, right?”

  1. Yes…yes we are. And pay-for-play is the reason why.

    1. Parents are short sighted and want to win games – its the only sign of progress they understand.
    2. Coaches are smart, and know that parents want to win games – or will take their “better” (read bigger at a younger age) players elsewhere. They know parents will talk about “development”, but they also know parents think “development” is winning games.
    3. DOCs and volunteer boards in America lack balls…and wont run clubs as true development clubs.
    3. Because of the above, at young ages (think U7-U10) coaches teach rigid systems of play, and keep the same kids in the same positions, and play the “better” kids 100% of the time while benching others 50% of the time.
    4. Teams will win based on this model, and even “progress” from Bronze, to Silver, to Gold.
    5. These kids get to 11v11 and all of a sudden they realize they don’t have the skills to compete (from basic passing and receiving, to seeing the field, making the right decisions quickly, etc) , and for most of them it’s too late to learn and catch up.

    So, yes, we are developing robots, who know how to play one position, and play the ball to the “fast, big guy” (or girl) in order for them to score and the “team” to win. As for those “better” kids – they’re just as screwed, even tho their parents think they’re getting the royal treatment (playing the forward, goal scoring positions all the time, never being benched, scoring all the goals). Those kids quickly realize its all about them, and if they dont play well the team loses. So, do they take risks and try new moves? Hell no – they do what they know how to do, to make sure they actually score and the team “wins”.

    Sad stuff, and its not going to end any time soon….


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