Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Sally Pearson inspires Primary School Soccer

"It's been great. Just seeing Sally Pearson win her Gold Medal race at the World Championships has really inspired everyone involved in Primary School Soccer this week," said young Athletics Coach Tiny Passmore.

The Primary School Soccer Tournament is on in Canberra all week and despite all the talk of FFA's revolution of Small Sided Games the girls are playing on the biggest pitch at the recently and more appropriately renamed Hawker Junior Athletics Centre.

"It's fantastic," said a local football administrator, "it's another first for Canberra, combining the Athletics trials with the PSSA Soccer tournament. To have it at the Hawker Centre...well we couldn't ask for more."

Coach Passmore has his girls working well.

"In the first half we work on sprinting. Lots of short sprinting. The other kids are normally pretty keen so we find short sprints are the go.

"In the second half we look for the cross-country runners. The gaps appear on the field and the distance runners come into their own. The Hawker Athletics Centre is fantastic, nice and smooth, a great surface and lots of huge open spaces to run into."

What about Football Federation Australia's Small Sided Games focus?

"Oh who gives a stuff about that. That's for the young soccer kids aged 6-10. We're the older end of the Primary School and we're focused on Athletics through Soccer. Look at Sally Pearson she won without going near a ball - just running and jumping in a straight line.

"The Parents want it, and the players love running so we get them on Hawker and we can really assess their pace and ability to stay the distance.

"I mean take the game we just saw. The young girl upfront for South Australia, tiny isnt she, I think she's 11. She showed a fantastic Soccer skill to turn away and beat her defender at half-way but despite getting a 5 yard sprint in and leading towards goal - the real joy for me was seeing our defender just run her down. Our girl was bigger and we've taught them how to run in straight lines and the little girls skill counts for nothing. Fantastic. That's what we want to see. Pure athleticism running down these players over 40 or 50 metres."

His observations were correct.

"They were all looking tired in the second half - but the long distance runners came into their own. I took the sprinters off in the first half. And what's really good is that we get another game today on the same pitch. Just awesome. They'll be knackered but we'll see who can run now!

"We've got the Head honcho's from the National Athletics Board in the stand and they are getting a pretty good idea who the next Cathy Freeman or Sally Pearson will be. You really couldn't ask for more from a Primary School Soccer tournament."

"Every ground in Canberra is vacant all week - big grounds, little grounds, you name it but this is the stage the men play on so for 11 and 12 year old kids to get the chance to replicate that - how good is that!"

Note: All names, characters mentioned above are pure make-believe. No human or player was hurt in the telling or enacting of this blog.


Anonymous said...

Hmmm, My guess is that all the 11 & 12 olds are very excited about playing and (rightly or wrongly) are used to playing full field.

So why take the piss out of them. Perhaps a little encouragement would be nice.

Eamonn said...

Some full fields are bigger than others - but you know that.

Bet the kids be even more excited if they got near to the goal to have a shot, a full back could overlap, get in touch with a kid on the ball - maybe get a touch, regularly on the ball.

And I'm all for more excited kids.

and No piss taken out of the kids - you clearly miss the point of what I wrote. It's not about the kids - and as ever you're response is not unexpected.

The piss is rightly aimed at the organisers of the tournament. They are adults they can cope with a different view - clearly not a correct one in your view or there's - we're all entitled to an opinion.

I'm comfortable that my thoughts on pitch size would produce better players, happier players, having more fun. I'm not alone the FFA have written a whole curriculum based on it. Capital Football Tech Directors current and past preach it.

Your thoughts would lead to more of the same next year - and that's not good for player fun, player development is it?

In fact by writing what I wrote people might realise how stupid the policy of playing on MASSIVE fields is. Clearly not enough people are thinking about our kids.

I'd argue I'm actually contributing to the future development of 11 and 12 kids by raising the issue - someone has to.

Have you ever coached 11 or 12 year olds? Have you done an FFA Coaching course? Have you considered what is best and more fun for kids.

Talk to them and see what they say?

Massive pitch or smaller pitch - simple question ask your kids?

Anonymous said...

Amazingly I have coached, taken an FFA course, do like small sided games and think I’m aware of what kids like. So I do (sort of) have similar thoughts to you.

What annoys me is people using kids sports for their own agenda. Why in the middle of a competition (which neither of us has probably attended so we no idea how games are being played) do you choose now to make your point. PSSA is a long standing competition and you could have raised concerns about the format many times in the past. Yet I do not recall it being mentioned much at all on your blog.

Does the world have to be filled with negatively? Why cannot you rejoice in the wonderfulness of kids getting outside and playing sport instead of sitting at home surfing the net all day.

Why don’t you go down to the tournament and find some positives to write about. That is what I challenge you to do!

Eamonn said...

Think my friend.... before you write!

Thanks for your challenge but

I was at the very first game -

so stick that in your sanctimonious pipe challenge and smoke it!

Maybe it's your turn to go but I couldn't be bothered challenging you to do anything.

Rejoice in the kids, well I do - but actually I'm about the kids and getting a better experience for them. Someone has to be!

On second thoughts you're right. We should delete the blog and say this is fantastic, 11 year old kids playing on the same field as Brett Emerton.