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Old 02-28-17, 09:03 PM
Reynaldo2000 Reynaldo2000 is offline
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Playing multiple positions

I am having a heck of a time trying to convince my daughter's coach the importance of players getting experience playing multiple positions. He sticks these youth players in one position and they never get a chance to play anywhere else cause he wants to win games....

I am wondering what the people on this board think the proper age for players to start specializing is (excluding goalkeepers)....
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Old 02-28-17, 09:10 PM
Gr8tS0ccr Gr8tS0ccr is offline
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Depends on the kid, but generally speaking, after puberty for sure.


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Old 02-28-17, 09:23 PM
Reynaldo2000 Reynaldo2000 is offline
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Originally Posted by Gr8tS0ccr View Post
Depends on the kid, but generally speaking, after puberty for sure.


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Well I didn't expect that....I was just wondering how this was going to turn into an OE vs. CUP thread.....
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Old 02-28-17, 11:18 PM
Conan73 Conan73 is online now
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I agree that it depends on the kid -- the age, the positions in question, etc. Early on, they should definitely get to try multiple positions. However, some kids do start to show preferences early on.

For some high school aged kids, they reach a certain physical and mental maturity where they can become more open to exploring other positions.

Also, there are some positions that should be natural transitions to other positions. I.e., a good outside forward should be able to be converted to a solid outside back and vice versa. Sometimes a holding mid and a center back can be interchangeable, and so on.

Lastly, while a coach may not want to experiment in a game, he/she should dedicate practice time to switching. Even goal keepers should get field time during practice
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Old 03-01-17, 09:26 AM
Gr8tS0ccr Gr8tS0ccr is offline
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Originally Posted by Reynaldo2000 View Post
Well I didn't expect that....I was just wondering how this was going to turn into an OE vs. CUP thread.....
Interesting things happen when kids hit 13-14-15. I have seen a kid that sat the bench, and seemed completely disinterested become the best player on the field in the span of 2 years. That is why it is so critical for them to learn multiple positions, and get the same training/development. It is really hard for some coaches to look past the next competition, and I would question a coach that won't play a kid in multiple positions. Some will gravitate towards a certain position, but even then, I want them out of that comfort zone, so I tend to make sure they play at least two positions, sometimes 3, even as old as U14.
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Old 03-01-17, 11:12 AM
buckshooter5 buckshooter5 is offline
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This is exactly the problem with our sport. Coaches continue to put winning over development. Any youth coach that does not train girls to play multiple positions is simply a POS.
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Old 03-01-17, 07:10 PM
coachg coachg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reynaldo2000 View Post
I am having a heck of a time trying to convince my daughter's coach the importance of players getting experience playing multiple positions. He sticks these youth players in one position and they never get a chance to play anywhere else cause he wants to win games....

I am wondering what the people on this board think the proper age for players to start specializing is (excluding goalkeepers)....
Do they train in multiple position at training sessions? I ask because some parents don't realize that players spend more time training than playing in a game or at least they should. You also didn't mention the age of the player. I know as a coach I have always enjoyed pushing players out of their comfort zone by not only trying new positions but new formations. I believe some coaches spend to much time on positions and patterns than teaching the players to think and truly understand the game. One of my favorite saying that I use a lot as a coach to players is "Play the game. Don't let the game play you!" I believe we as coaches don't spend enough time when players are young to teach the strategies of the game because many say young players cant grasp the concept. I disagree and believe most kids can learn these concepts much at a younger age than many believe.
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Old 03-01-17, 07:19 PM
coachg coachg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buckshooter5 View Post
This is exactly the problem with our sport. Coaches continue to put winning over development. Any youth coach that does not train girls to play multiple positions is simply a POS.
Funny you say that. I will correct you though that not all coaches put winning first. Every year I have meeting with my team and I ask them to tell me what our team goals are and I write them down on a board. I never had a team say a goal is to WIN. When you point that out and you to them their heads tilt sideways and if you facilitate the conversation as a coach instead of lead or guide it they figure out on their own that if they focus on their team goals that wins follow. I also believe to many coaches spend to much time after a loss talking about it after the match which sends a signal to the players that they need to win so they dont have to suffer through another lecture from their coach. I watched a coach keep a team for 30-45 minutes talking to them about their loss to a "lower" level team. I asked myself what point does that make and what does it solve. I keep my kids after any game the same amount of time and then focus on what I need to do to better prepare them next time.
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Old 03-01-17, 08:16 PM
Gr8tS0ccr Gr8tS0ccr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coachg View Post
Funny you say that. I will correct you though that not all coaches put winning first. Every year I have meeting with my team and I ask them to tell me what our team goals are and I write them down on a board. I never had a team say a goal is to WIN. When you point that out and you to them their heads tilt sideways and if you facilitate the conversation as a coach instead of lead or guide it they figure out on their own that if they focus on their team goals that wins follow. I also believe to many coaches spend to much time after a loss talking about it after the match which sends a signal to the players that they need to win so they dont have to suffer through another lecture from their coach. I watched a coach keep a team for 30-45 minutes talking to them about their loss to a "lower" level team. I asked myself what point does that make and what does it solve. I keep my kids after any game the same amount of time and then focus on what I need to do to better prepare them next time.
I agree. Post game, generally they aren't listening to you anyway. A couple of points, when the next training session is, and send them on their way. I generally try to stay focused on the things we did well, since if they performed poorly in an area, I didn't prepare them well enough and I will focus on it in training.
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Old 03-01-17, 08:52 PM
Reynaldo2000 Reynaldo2000 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coachg View Post
Do they train in multiple position at training sessions? I ask because some parents don't realize that players spend more time training than playing in a game or at least they should. You also didn't mention the age of the player. I know as a coach I have always enjoyed pushing players out of their comfort zone by not only trying new positions but new formations. I believe some coaches spend to much time on positions and patterns than teaching the players to think and truly understand the game. One of my favorite saying that I use a lot as a coach to players is "Play the game. Don't let the game play you!" I believe we as coaches don't spend enough time when players are young to teach the strategies of the game because many say young players cant grasp the concept. I disagree and believe most kids can learn these concepts much at a younger age than many believe.
I have trained players of all ages (6-18) and have always tried to move them around. Many times, parents did not want this for the older 13+ age groups. There were times however that as a coach, it was too easy to lock a player in to a position to win games, and the temptation is strong to do this. I cannot say that I always practiced what I am now preaching but more often than not I tried to develop a well-rounded player.

Now as a parent, I have seen my daughter play defender most of her club career only to be moved to a striker as a HS freshman because of her size (and struggle), and I really see now how important it is to play multiple positions. I am upset now looking back at her club coaches because I really think they hindered her development, since she was such a strong defender. She learned to let the game come to her, and didn't learn to attack with confidence. In many games as soon as she came off the field the other team scored within minutes, and I think coaches saw this and didn't want to move her out of the position. I wish I would have spoke up and demanded that they develop all of her skills and not just her defensive skills.
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