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What a great vehicle of friendship soccer is!

Recently, the team that I coach, The Sparrows U16 Girls in San Francisco, hosted a girls team from Australia. The MLC (Methodist Ladies College) from Sidney.

What a great experience! For them and for us adults.

We played a friendly game at the Polo Field in the Golden Gate Park. As you can imagine, in particular a Ďfriendly gameí, no one likes to lose! They didnít come all that way from Australia to get beaten!!! I like this attitude. And we did our best to fight proudly with them. It would be ridiculous to let them win from courtesy, just to be polite. We fought on every ball and they did the same, without ever complaining about fouls, offside or whatever. Exactly the opposite of every game that we play officially in our Sunday league!

And, at the end, everyone smiled and embraced each ether, as if the girls had been friends for a long time.

Every family, hosted one or two girls in their homes so, Iím sure that during the nights, the girls stayed together and talked endlessly, which is characteristic of this age. Listened to different kinds of music, talked about the boys that they know in Australia, what they do, what they like, what they eat, what they do in their free time. For sure, many things are the same but many others are different and this is how we enrich each other.

I strongly encourage other teams to do the same. Itís a bit of a nightmare to make it all work out, but worth the effort. Fortunately, my job is to coach them! George Jacobs, the General Manager and Co-coach, plus all the Parents, did miracles to make the program work. It was great!

There is only one big problem. Now, all our girls, want to go to Sidney, in Australia!!!! How can we say, ďnoď?!

This is the beauty of soccer. It letís people from different realities come together and know each other. It helps us to understand, that we play on a bigger team, all together, and we have a daily game to play, against a team whoís goal is only to divide us. If we donít come together, spend time together, we will lose that bigger game!

Thanks Australian Girls, for having come from so far away. I hope that, in a little while, we can repay the visit!

Coach Gianni

Posted on 24 Oct 2006 by coachgianni
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