Monday, April 19, 2010

Youth Soccer: Not All Parents Want Stats Made Public

In a 1 to 0 soccer game, who gets the accolades and the press, the sweeper, the stopper or the scorer? The scorer usually does.

I keep the game stats for the coaching staff. The stats help the coach manage the game. Recently, one of the assistant coaches who has developed a website for the team posted to stats. Here is the response from one of the parents.

We appreciate all the effort and time that you have put into creating this
website for the team.


My thoughts regarding the addition of statistics are that they are an
unnecessary addition to the site.  The team has come a long way in the last
year to mesh together and work as a unit.  By highlighting statistics for
the team it could drive all kinds of negative behavior between players and
parents -it should still be about fun and teamwork at this age.  I would
prefer to see comments that highlight a fantastic play that you have been
working on or a superb move that a player did that you have been practicing.


I realize that the statistical information is not any secret as we are all
there watching the games.  However, personally my husband and I are not keeping
track of individual players goals, assists and other measurements.  If it is
a unanimous decision between the parents, trainer, and league to track these
measurements at this age and level of play then we should agree on someone
who can dedicate their attention to tracking this.


Again, we truly appreciate all the time and effort that you and Coach J put in
to the team but strongly feel that this is not a positive addition and
should be removed immediately.


Sincerely,


Anthony and Dee
The stats were pulled from the site.

The Main Point

Let's face it. Soccer is a low scoring game and 1 to 0 soccer games are more likely to happen than a 10 to 9 game. In a 1 to 0 soccer game, the defense played flawlessly for the entire 40, 60, 90 minutes of the game. (Length of games varies with age group.) The one goal most likely happened in a split second and was the result of a combination of a defensive stop, followed by several passes to make it happen. I believer that goals are over-rated as a measure, but I have been watching soccer for a long time and there are some players that have a nose for the goal and others who do not. Scoring or finishing as many call it is a skill that only a few possess. I wish that there were better statistical measures in soccer to measure defensive contributions for non-goalies.

1 comment:

  1. There are stats that you can track for defensive plays. Keep track of the number of tackles (not slide tackles). A tackle would be awarded any time a defensive player "wins" the ball from an attacker. You could also track the number of times a defensive player forces an attacker to the outside or when they force an attacker to turn around.

    Instead of stats, our club emphasizes "moves". At the younger ages the kids are taught a total of 20 moves, such as scissors, a drag back, etc...

    An assistant coach keeps has a paper with a roster and list of all the moves. Kids get credit for any move ATTEMPTED in a game. It doesn't have to be successful, they just have to try it. After you get 10 moves over the course of a couple games, you get a cool patch to put on your bag. The kids eat it up. They love collecting patches and they love the positive encouragement to try new things in a game situation without fear of being told anything other than "well done" from their coach.

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