Interview young players and ask them what they like about soccer and I guarantee nearly 99% of them will say quite simply, “it’s fun!”
Why do they play? “To hang out with friends.”
How do they learn the game? “By playing,” “from watching it on TV and going to (MLS) games” and “seeing older players at tournaments or in high school matches.”
Who inspires them? “The professionals and (their) coach.”
Young players love to love the game – to score goals and play in drills and games where they get to express themselves. They often show up time after time because their friends are teammates and their teammates become lifelong friends. They look up to professionals but the professionals are “out there” but their coach, who is right in front of them day after day, is usually their most immediate and consistent role model.
With this type of adoration from young players it is imperative that their coaches up their own game – show up prepared and ready to inspire.