Self-reflection is a great life tool to have in your tool belt. After completing a 1-0 game last night with two coaches being issued cards for dissent. I took a moment to reflect and ask myself did I and my referee team impact the game or did we let the players decide the game on the field. I ask was I correct with my judgment. Did I handle dissent efficiently? Was there ever a moment where I missed an item regarding player safety? Did anybody truly try to cheat the game? The irony here is as a referee I get when a central defender says to bump off the other teams 11. High school soccer is truly the craziest form out there since 5’3″ freshman forwards can be matched up against 6’2 central defenders. This is really the first form some players run into where they are no longer in age appropriate classifications. The result for referee’s is seeing the smaller player going to the ground often and in spectacular fashion when they bump into these much larger defenders.
I tend to look at every Jr. High season as a learning and learning season. While wins and losses are nice, I realize that in order to be competitive on the high school level we need to make sure every year we have between 7 to 10 girls move on to the high school program each year. These numbers would allow our high school team to play a JV and Varsity schedule. Why is this important? The game really is the best teacher. Playing games that are realistic to the full size game gives players the best experience. We really do have a situation where some of our team’s girls play lots of soccer and some are just getting on the field and learning to compete for the first time.
Take this week to reflect on where each of us our as Jr. High players. Use the guidelines of US Soccer to see if you are meeting the player actions defined for the U14 grass roots player.
Mid-season Objectives- Please take a moment as a player for personal reflection:
• Develop improved skills with the ball
• Develop intelligence with and without the ball
- Develop partnerships within the team
- Promote faster decisions and better awareness
- Improve confidence and comfort in different positions.