Post #31
Wednesday January 1, 2014 3:22am

Joined Nov 2012
Total Posts: 1,805
Original post from dfw_fan

I think population density in the cities also plays a major role in pick up games as US is sparsely populated to other countries which would make it harder for parents and kids.

This is a huge obstacle for us. One of the advantages to the academy system is that it is very good at centralizing competition. All of the best players get to play each other. America is so big that this is much more difficult. How do you convince the parents of a ten-year-old prodigy that they need to move six hours away so that their kid can play for the Chicago Fire academy? Brazil is massive but everyone plays so much soccer there it isn't a disadvantage. Soccer isn't concentrated enough in one region in the US to really produce a culture. If you look at the aggregate numbers, we have more registered soccer players than any other country. But they're all so far away from each other it's hard to get the best players playing together.

Original post from mattgerlach's never to late to follow your dream (unless your 85 and want to play in the BPL...even then, maybe) Check out Jon Acuff best selling author about this...and I have enjoyed reading these posts!

Thanks bud. I might give it a shot.

Original post from MSantoine

I lot of this comes down to the US culture and the way the world is now. Think about the countries that excel at pickup soccer. Spain, Brazil (most of SA really) Mexico, etc. What do these countries have in common? Their economies are based off factory/agriculture. In a lot of these countries cities, in reality villages, are created/were created in areas where there was a factory/mill/field that the couple hundred residents worked at. They built the village around the factory so they could walk to work. And guess what these people did with their kids? They brought them with them. You'd have 20-60 youths hanging around empty fields/parking lots with hours to kill. They'd kick a ball around since they were altogether. In USA you almost never see a bunch of children unsupervised in an area. Its unheard of. Everyone is afraid of child kidnapping and other things that it just doesnt happen here, and quite frankly never will. I dont think you can count on "pickup soccer" gaining popularity around here is its just not part of our social background anymore. The better fight to fight would be a better youth system that targets player development over winning a U7 division 4 state championship.


We're talking about really young kids here and they have heavily involved parents who make decisions for them. So what do we need to do? Convince dads to play soccer with their kids. US soccer needs to come out with some training manuals for how to teach soccer to kids aged 2-6. The dads need to play ball with them in the yard every day (with a small ball of course). Maybe we need more rec soccer leagues for really young kids and just let them scrimmage (no coaching).

One thing is for sure, if you are passionate about US soccer, it is your DUTY to teach your sons soccer from a very young age and to encourage them to play pick-up ball with their friends. This is what dads in other countries do, and until it happens in the US, we won't catch up to the rest of the world.
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