MOSA (Monmouth Ocean Soccer Association) kicked off their opening weekend of soccer April 6th and 7th and overall I am sure the play was great. However, my very first experience on Sunday was overhearing a coach talk to his players after a game, and it made me cringe. I was so disgusted by what the coach was saying, I nearly stepped in. If I had a an assistant with me and my U8 boys pregame chaos wasn’t ensuing, I would have said something.
A quick league search helped me figure out who it was, and they may be getting a link to this in their inbox. Although, the purpose of this website is to promote the positive, in my defense, ridding the game of this negativity is only a positive. However, I will not be sharing information on club or location for confidentiality purposes.
This is what happened:
The team sat down on the fold up bench after the final whistle, obviously upset with the result. The team huddled around their coach as he slowly took a knee, looked them in the eye, and said “that is the worst game you have ever played.” Cue nausea… He proceeded to tell them how out of shape they were (yea, it’s the first game of Spring) and everything else they stunk at during the game.
What made it worse was the delivery. It wasn’t yelling, which somehow I think would have been better because the players would have just ignored the noise. It was in a quiet, but direct tone that made me feel as if I also was terrible during the game for listening. This example of awful coaching has sat in my stomach for 24 hours now with nowhere to vent but on my blog, so that is what I am doing.
Coaches, have some patience, learn to talk to kids, understand what you are telling them IS affecting their lives, and at least attempt to see things from a child’s perspective.
I cannot tell you how many times I have been disappointed by the first game of the Spring. My experience has diluted that feeling. Although, even the novice coach can take a step back and recognize the potential regression from a New Jersey winter with limited game play.
Focus on what you did well, take time to reflect on what your team needs to improve on, and address it at the next practice with the team after post game emotions have died down.
This type of behavior needs to be removed from the game, a coaching education courses don’t touch enough on the sideline discussions. That is the time in games when true coaching is done and seeing this example of poor coaching this weekend leads me to believe US Youth Soccer and USC need to get this part of coaching in the curriculum.