Top 5, 06.27: Teaching the Youth; Chicago Changes

In the order in which I wrote 'em....

- It turns out us Yanks aren't the only ones worrying about turning our youth into the soccer superstars of tomorrow; the Canadians have wrung hands of their own. But I couldn't help trip over one section in a Toronto Star article on the subject:

"The hope is that a handful will one day graduate to the senior side – "the [Ajax of Amsterdam] first team" – that has won four European championships. Until that day, the on-field scoreboards will not be lit up. No goal tally is kept during their games."

"European youth soccer focuses on skills development and little else. Winning is not important. Learning the skills needed to win is."

I don't know the state of this debate so well, but I seem to recall an argument that our kids need to be put in competitive games to sharpen their game. I'm wondering if that's the case - and I've certainly read compelling pieces (can't find them now) about the corrossive effect the win-at-all-costs mentality can have on how we teach the game. And who's going to argue with Ajax in any case? (Actually, it could be fair to ask why Dutch players tend to implode on the largest of occasions; maybe they need to light up that scoreboard a little before the first team?)

- I feel compelled to note Mexico's 2-0 win over Brazil. I can't say I pull for Mexico often, but if there's one thing I always pull for, it's a Brazil loss. Can't wait to see what we do tonight (and I'm not going to let the doom bring me down, either - or a loss by fewer than, oh, four goals for that matter).

- In happier tournament news, the U-20 FIFA Cup starts this weekend (wow!). And guess what? We go first! I don't know that anyone's carrying this (doesn't look like it), so you'll have to follow this where you can. Turning again to our northern neighbors, they seem pretty stoked to be hosting the U-20s; the more interesting question - especially when future World Cup qualifying is concerned - is are they loaded with talent?

- The Chicago Fire cleared some money/international space today by shit-canning Pascal Bedrossian; they got even more help with Ivan Guerrero picking up his green card. The real question, though, is whether they've got time to help themselves before July 1? (Isn't that when rosters have to be fixed?)

- Finally - and this really pisses me off - why is it that ESPN will carry (it's in there; trust me) a dog-n-pony show like goddamn World Series of Soccer, but they won't pony up for the U.S. games for the Copa America?



pupkick said...

U-20 tourney is on ESPNU

The Manly Ferry said...

Thanks for that, but, sadly, I don't get that more reason that I hate my cable package (well, the main reason being that I can't simply buy the channels I want....though I know what that'll do to all the channels I actually want to watch).

pupkick said...

Can't stop lovin' my Dish Network package :)

Found out the other day I actually had GOLTV (channel 407) too, so I get to see Copa games.