Coach: I hope you’re right, but I’ll tell you I’m in the far minority (concerning Tournaments). Many parents live their lives through their children, and success for them in a thing as silly as U10 playoffs make their day. The bad thing of course is that the fun for many of the kids is thus tied to winning, and competition being what it is means only half the kids “have fun”. I take pride that my kids have no idea who is in first or last, we just play every game as it comes. They seem a pretty happy bunch to me.
At least we play 9 on 9 as you suggest in U10, and the rest of our region follows your 5-7-9-11 rule. The only downside in our U10 league is that each roster carries 12 players, meaning 3 have to sit each quarter (we have a 3/4 play rule). That’s no fun for the coach as kids want to play, not sit out. We have so many kids and the fields are packed as is, that we can’t afford to have any more teams.
Thanks again for, as always, your great suggestions. I don’t know if I can give you enough compliments in that regard.
Karl: What a sad commentary U-10 playoffs They may not listen to you –today… But give them a few years and watch them change their minds and it will become their idea.
I was able to eliminate U10 tournaments in Cal-N -It only took 17 years of educating the adults -other states have followed this trend. As a matter of fact the US Youth Soccer Assoc. has adopted Small Sided Game format up to the age of U12. Unfortunately, it was only ‘suggested’ rather than mandated. Fortunately, it did not become a mandate since they have the number of players -on the field per age group wrong. I still believe in the 5-7-9-11 progression -Some have pointed out that I was wrong -but, they are no longer or were not involved in the younger age groups…!
Be ‘patient’ and good luck in the coming weeks – let me know how the ‘Playing tag’ methodology works for increasing dribbling confidence.