“Never work with animals or children” is a famous quote from W.C. Fields.
And at last night’s two practices, I now understand where he was coming from!
We took a week off for Spring Break and I couldn’t wait to get back on the pitch with my 2005 and 2007 boys’ teams.
What a let down.
For some reason both teams were lethargic and simply not “up for it.”
Maybe a little too much familiarity. Maybe a bit of cockiness. Maybe the honeymoon period of joining a new team and club has worn off.
So, I ran through our usual technical work. The 6 Turns, the “Iniesta,” our move, “touch touch” and then some of our 3 pass combinations (ABBA, ABAC, ABCA, ABCB, ABCD).
So, I decided to set up 4on4 games for my 2007s and an 8on8 game for my 2005s.
And I just let them play.
I did my very best to just observe them and not “interfere.”
But again, they disappointed as they ran around like “headless chickens.”
So I imposed the condition of “two touch” and that seemed to help.
With the older boys especially, I had to really have them concentrate on slowing their game down. Get a rhythm of “touch, pass,” “touch, pass,” “touch, pass…”
And finally we started to make progress.
At the end of practice I felt a little better and then I put it into perspective by remembering the quote from W.C.Fields, “Never work with animals or children.” He was right and tonight was testament to that.
Problem is, my job is to work with children, so I just need to realize every now and then that they are just children and there will be times when they don’t perform or put the effort in that I was hoping for.
But when push comes to shove, we were out on the soccer field playing the best game on the planet. What more could I ask for?
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