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It takes 8 to 10 years to build a top soccer/football player !!!!!

All kids deserve to have a lot of fun and to play soccer/football is one of the best ways. But playing basketball or baseball is also very fun, and swimming too !!!! And, apart from sports, playing the guitar or the piano is very fun. Or drawing or singing or dancing.

Have you ever considered that the top soccer/football players in the world, the top players on the NBA or MLB, before getting to the top, were kids too ?????

All the top artists in the world, painters, singers or dancers were kids too.

All of them were playing or performed with all the other kids. Sure, we could have seen that they were slightly better than the other kids, but who could have said that that particular kid or even a few of them could become top soccer/football players ??? A few of them will play for the NBA or MLB or.............. win a gold medal by swimming at the Olympic games???

Or a few of them would become world wide artists ????

So, just because they were doing that with all the other kids, did anyone really believe that they would become so good by............MAGIC ?????

All the talented top musicians, the painters and the dancers, while they are kids (in this exact moment !!!!) are studying at the Academies or Conservatories for...........many hours a day and do so for YEARS !!!!!!!

Swimmers (in this exact moment !!!), while going to school as usual, practice swimming many hours a day for YEARS !!! They doing that early in the morning before they go to school (maybe 5:30am to 7:30am !!!!) and another 2 hours late afternoon after homework.

Itís not clear to me where, when and who, develops the top basketball and baseball players skills because I donít know well how these 2 sports are managed at the youth age in this country so, I will not talk about something that I donít know.

But, I know how young, top soccer/football players are developed in the rest of the world and how they are developed ( developed ????) here in the USA !!!

As I always say, if they want to do it, all kids should play soccer/football just for fun for their whole life. But, a small % that are clearly very talented, at 8-10 years old, supposing that they would like to try to go to the top (!!!!), should begin to develop properly the gift that mother nature put there.

Just as an example, here you can see Tomy who plays on the youth teams of Aston Villa in England !!!! He is the son of Juan Pablo Angel who now plays for the Los Angeles Galaxy.

I repeat: all other kids should continue to play just for fun their whole lives until their knees and ankles say to them that itís time to stop. That, in general, happens around...................60/65 years old !!!!

So, what happens in the rest of the world ???

-Talented kids 8/10 years old (as Tomy above) enter the Youth Academies of professional soccer/football Clubs. There, while developing their talents, they also continue to have the same fun as all the other kids !!!

-They will be trained by ex-professional players who, after having retired, studied years to become coaches.

What happens here?

-A talented player at 8/10 years old, will be part of a group of kids that a group of parents will put together and call that group team !!!!

-90% of the times, (O.K. maybe not 90%, just 70/80% of the times) they will be coached (coached ???) by a parent that never played soccer/football so, if by chance they pass the ball to them, they will miss them by yards !!!!! In some rare occasions, this parent has an F license that could be acquired in a few.........hours !!!!

Please donít misunderstand me. I love the parents who donate their time but 99% of the times itís because their daughters or sons are on the teams !!!! They would never, ever, do that if it wasnĎt for this reason !!!!

Practices at the Youth Academy of a professional Club.

-3 to 4 times a week they will work specifically in developing the fundamental skills. At the end of every practice, they will play a short scrimmage to make the connection between simulations and the reality of the game.

-The professional players of the first team of the top Clubs in the world, sometimes, mix with them and show them what the ďchampionsĒ do with their ďmagicĒ feet !!!!

-They will play 35/40 games a year. The proportion will be 3 or 4 practices and 1 game.

Practices here.

-2 times a week, but very often just 1.

-Practice is rarely in developing fundamental skills. Often is just a scrimmage calling that...................practice !!!!

-Often, apart from the League season or School season, teams (groups of 10/12 kids put together by parents without a try-out !!!!) play many tournaments and, if they win, play 4 games in a week end !!!!!

In the rest of the world........

-Talented kids donít play at school. They play on the Youth Teams of professional soccer/football Clubs.

-They practice all year round with the correct amount of vacations.

-And, of course, they study (!!!!) like all the other kids !!!!


-They play for the school starting in 6th grade practicing (practicing ???) and play games in a season 2 months long !!!! For the rest of the year they will play lacrosse, basketball and maybe baseball.

-After a few years the same happens at High School and, the few really good players, will also play for a team (please donít use the word Club with me !!!) until they are 18 years old and ready to go to college.

-If they are so lucky to have encountered a good coach, they have a scholarship and play at College until they are 21/22.

In the meantime, in the rest of the world, after having trained in developing their skills properly for 8/10 years, the top players are now 18/19 and ready to make their official debut on the first team !!!

It doesnít matter in what Nation, in what Professional Club and in what division (1st-2nd- 3th or 4th) they achieved that level because if they are just good they will play professionally on a lower level Club, if they are very good they will play in the First Division of that Nation, if they are exceptionally good they will be asked to play for Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool, Manchester United or City, Inter Milan, A.C. Milan, Chelsea, Arsenal and other.........dozens of Top World Professional Clubs !!!

Here, in a Nation of 300 million people, with 17 million people who play soccer/football, in 150 years, in one hundred fifty years, we were able to barely build 1 player (ONE !!!!) who could enter the list of the 100 actual best players in the world !!!! (Just #100 in a list of 100 !!! Landon Donovan)

And letís forget the list of the 100 best living players.

And also lets forget the list of the 100 best ever !!!

So, in conclusion, how could it be possible to build top world soccer/football players here in the USA by kicking the ball around a couple months a year at school, maybe coached by a math or history Teacher who maybe never played soccer/football ????

Or on a team put together by parents that, almost always, in a few years regularly........DISAPPEARS ???

And, even if here and there in all of the United States there are some decent soccer/football academies, a really good soccer/football player 8/10 years old, what youth team of a professional or semi-professional team could he/she go to play for????

At least, try to create what I pointed out in Augustís news letter !!!! Please read: Soccer teams disappear but soccer clubs last forever !!!!!

Posted on 07 Nov 2011 by coachgianni
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