I pretty much completely agree with this 100%. The problem becomes getting the people with money and resources to buy into that vision, knowing there is going to be quite a while of investment with little to no return. Jut I agree, that once that hump is finally gotten over there talent that will begin to flourish in that environment will be bountiful. It can and would start to look very similar to what you get for the next level from high school talent in most of the other sports.I won't dispute this and suspect that the variability in High School Soccer coaching is very large. But I'm not saying they should be scouting HS soccer today I'm saying that maybe the powers that be in American soccer should be looking at HS soccer as the place to invest their money and energy so that the coaching & skills training improves.
Think of HS soccer as one of those great old houses they remodel on HGTV. The place needs a lot of work but the bones are solid and the potential end product after the remodeling is spectacular. You even said it yourself Gr8tSOccr that HS soccer was "a blast". That's the environment that can attract kids to play for their high school that can't easily be imitated in club soccer.
The other advantage of using HS soccer as the infrastructure for developing players is that you already have outposts in the urban areas where soccer isn't popular but athletic kids reside in abundance. It's easier to make inroads at inner city high schools then trying to attract kids to "club" by putting in a soccer field at the local park.
And to be clear, HS soccer wouldn't be responsible for the final training of talent. That would be left to elite "clubs" and academy's. It would follow the football situation where HS introduces a highly competitive version of the sport to teenagers. Even though only a very small number of kids will go on from HS to play in the MLS and on the National Team millions more will become lifetime fans for having played HS soccer.
I don't think trying to mold soccer into the European mold of developing talent is the right choice in America. This is one place where our way of cultivating athletic talent probably would be best here in this country.
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