Tuesday, December 10, 2019
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SCOTTSMAN HAS RIGHT IDEA ABOUT YOUTH COACHING

Question: What parent in their right mind would let their kid play soccer in the snow and the rain?
Answer: Scottish parents.
Are these not the same men that wear kilts?
“When it snows, all we do is clear the lines and then we are good to go.” David Robertson told me, and he should know. David played 15 years of professional soccer in Scotland. He played for the Aberdeen Glasgow Rangers and the Leeds United teams there. He also played on each level of the Scotland National Teams as he was growing up.
Today he is the Director of Coaches for the Sereno Soccer Club in Arizona. Sereno has 54 teams; which means taking on the challenge of keeping 54 youth coaches in line. Make that 53 coaches because David or should I say “Coach Robertson” coaches one team himself. And, by the way that team won the State Cup, and then went on to win the Region. This put them into the national tournament with the 5 other region winners. They went all the way to the championship game before getting beat. I guess having the 2nd best 15/under team isn’t too bad!
“How did you do it”? I asked him.
“I didn’t do it, the kids did it. And, we did it the U.K. way”, he told me.
What is the U.K. way, you might be asking?
I asked that same question to Coach Robertson and the answer was clear.
In Scotland, there is no confusion on who the game is for.
“Too many coaches here are interested in winning the state cup for themselves.” Robertson told me.
He also told me that too many kids get dragged here and there, because one coach’s sales pitch is better than the other’s.
By the way, I have noticed this with youth basketball as well, coaches recruiting and trying to take kids from other teams so that their team can be the best. This again usually comes from the coach wanting wins for themselves; not keeping the kid’s best as the priority.
Coach Robertson shared with me his concern that too many parents and coaches put too much pressure on their kids to do well.
“I have seen it too many times; if a kid makes a mistake, he gets taken out of the game”, Robertson said.
I have to agree with him in that the pressure of performance takes the fun out of the game. It is refreshing to hear the emphasis of fun from a man who achieved such a high level of success in his sport.
He went on to share with me that in Scotland, the kids do not have to pay to play. Yes that’s right, it’s free!
I love it that the Scotts don’t call it quits for the weather. Just clear the lines, and as long as you can see the goal through all the snow flakes; let’s play ball!
I would love to see a youth championship game of 10 year olds between the USA and Scotland in the middle of a blizzard. How fun would that be?
My only rule: NO KILTS ON THE FIELD!

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