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Leaving your trash on the field after the game, is unacceptable.

Itís unbelievable that, in spite of all the recommendations by the Leagues, Soccer Federations, various soccer Web-sites and Tournament Organizers, we still see teams that leave the fields living bottles, paper bags, pieces of tape or whatever, behind them when they leave.

The big problem itís that no one feels responsible for this behavior. So, Iíd like to underline, in my opinion, who is responsible in order of importance.


A few weeks ago, I went to the Polo Field in San Francisco, during Memorial Day, to see the finals of the San Francisco Cup.

One of the games I saw was the final U14 Boys.

I donít know the names of the teams, and itís not important. The teams with the red jersey, really deserved to win the game.

At the end, the usual cheering from the parents, picture for memories, singing and all the usual choreography. Everything good and correct.

At a certain moment, forgetting cool down and stretching after such a demanding game, the coach went to the folding bench, folded it and turn his back to a minimum of ten plastic bottles, exactly in front of the bench. I thought, now he will call the players and ask them to pick up the garbage.

WRONG!!!!! He walked away.

The parents, just a few yards away outside the fence, couldnít help but see all those bottles. They didnít say a word about this and just called their sons to indicate to them what direction to go out from the field.

The most unbelievable thing was to see all the U14 players with the red jerseys, living the field by crossing it, clearly disturbing the next two teams, U19, who were already on the field warming up for the next Final. Not only that, they walked on top of the bottles without picking up them and, one of the players, KICKED ONE BOTTLE STRAIT ONTO THE FIELD!!!!!!!!!!

If these U14 players are left free to behave like this, it means that theyíve acted that way every time theyíve left the fields for the last 5 years! And the worst thing is that they will grow up and let their future sons and daughters act like them.

In 50 years Iíve never seen something like this from a team, and in particular from the one that won the tournament! I canít imagine what they would have left behind if they had lost the final!

How is it possible that the coach, the general manager, the parents and the players could act like that, as if it were the most normal thing to do?

Whoís responsible for this behavior?

#1. COACHES are the principal responsible for this. They have to teach the players how to behave on the field. Respecting the opponents and the referees is O.K., but to leave the place where they were stationed for 2 hours, clean for the next teams that will be there, is absolutely mandatory.

#2. GENERAL MANAGERS. They have to reinforce these rules of normal coexistence between human beings! This is not only about soccer. Soccer, like every sport, has to make us better people.

#3. PARENTS. How can they let their sons act like that with the total absence of interior discipline? Why donít they explain to their sons that, if during a 3 day tournament, all the teams that occupy 7 fields, leave 10 bottles, at the end of the tournament, the fields would be INVISIBLE FROM THE BLEACHERS, since they would be obstructed by a mountain of various garbage? If their sons act like that in a PUBLIC place, used by others after them, can you imagine their rooms at home?

Is it so hard to understand? It seems so!

#4. REFEREES. I think that the referees, that are so focused in every, infinitesimal and insignificant particular, have to say something when they see these behaviors.

#5. TOURNAMENT ORGANIZERS. Why, aside from telling the teams to clean up when they enroll, donít they go and control after the games, to see if the teams clean up after themselves? They can say in the beginning that, if they donít clean up, they will be penalized with fines or in points in the final standing of the tournament.

Is it to much to ask? Am I the only one who notices this aspect? Judging from the Tournament that I saw, it seems so.

Coaches, General Managers, Parents, Players, Referees and Organizers, donít care.

If we still consider the world around us, OUR WORLD and not the OTHERíS WORLD, things will go from bad to worse. Only if we consider the world around us to be the world of OTHERS, in that moment, for the others, the world will be OURS, too!

Iím alone on this issue? Hope not.

Coach Gianni

Posted on 20 Jun 2006 by coachgianni
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