Saturday, December 8, 2007

U17 MNT win against Brazil

With full credit to the young men on the field, their coaches and the USSF a big result today for the u17 team. It goes to show that developing talent from the grassroots level up is so important. Keeping teams and groups together to develop cohesion so players know the strengths and weaknesses is vital. Well done men. You made the country proud. I also applaud the USSF for encouraging strong competition. Nothing builds success like success.

Friday, December 7, 2007

No posts lately

Sorry everyone, I have not posted recently due to some other priorities at home. As I type this I am sitting at CHOP (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia) in the ICU with my 7 year old daughter Abby. She is in critical/stable condition after some major complications from some minor surgery 10 days ago. My wife and I have been taking turns spending time at the hospital. It is my shift for the weekend and will go home Sunday night.

I will post some coaching thoughts later this weekend and some thoughts on some soccer that I have watched while Abby has been around.


Sunday, November 18, 2007

The end of the season banquet

Well the soccer season is officially over in Ridley. We had our annual banquet with over 600 families in attendance. Each team's coach presents two awards to deserving players on his team. I had tough choices this year for my two.

For the u6 girls Frenzy the winners were
MacKenzie Cannon for outstanding sportsmanship and over all play
Hannah Oaster won for most improved. She went from 0 goals last year to 5 this year. She also was a team leader during practice and the games.

For the u8 boys Crew the winners were
Jace Roberts for outstanding spirit, sportsmanship and hard work. This boy came to every practice, was the first boy there, among the last to leave, gave 100% in every game and every practice, never complained and improved dramatically all year. Every team needs a Jace Roberts and I wish I could coach a team full. He is a pleasure to coach because he can be coached, what he lacks in skill he more than makes up with heart. Heart cannot be coached. He plays the game like I would play.

JJ Oaster received it for outstanding play and improvement. Being the coach's son is hard, he had among the highest expectations of anyone on my team. He was consistently a leader in both practice and games and all of the boys really liked him on the team. He made the first team as my starting striker because of his great ball awareness, passing ability and ball handling skill. He became the corner kick and direct kick player by the end of the year. He had 7 SOT in the final three games with one of them hitting home. He is probably the best pure passer I have ever coached and among the most accurate kickers. In an age and at an age where kids want the glory of the goal, JJ passes and passes extremely well. He also can bend a ball like few boys his age I have ever seen. He exceeded my expectations and truly had to work very hard to get this award.

I know my two kids got awards but they truly earned them. I may be a little biased but I give awards for more than skills. I sat down with the parents and explained why each one got the award and not one parent questioned my decisions. After my explanations they all agreed.

I am going to miss my Saturdays on the pitch but it gives me time to study up and work up more plays and practices for the spring. I may be promoted to an assistant in the travel system next year so I will really have to step up my coaching education.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Girls end on a tie

Like the boys game earlier in the day the girls tied their final game 2-2. They too ended the year 5-3-1. 22 (I miscalculated a goal for Hannah earlier in the year) Goals scored only 6 conceded. Hannah scored the first and Mariah scored the second goal. Mariah's equalizer was with less than 30 seconds left. All the girls played well and most if not all want to play again for me in the spring. I am sad to see the season end but am very glad it ended up being a winning record for the girls.

Final scoring tallies for the girls

MacKenzie 4

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Last boys game-end with a tie

The boys ended their season with a 1-1 tie. Total record 5-3-1. A very good performance especially the last half of the year. In the last 4 games the boys only let up 2 goals while scoring 7.

I had only 9 boys show up today which meant most of the boys played the entire game. We basically owned the ball our possession time in their end was over 75%. We had 5 really good SOT and many other opportunities.

It is sad in a way to have the season end I will miss being out on the pitch every Saturday. I really enjoyed this team and the boys really played hard every week. There was obvious growth each week and the boys really grew as a team. I had very helpful and cooperative parents and a great assistant.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Week 9 games-1st goal for jj and winning ways continue

Week 8 games were canceled due to rain and very wet field.
The week 9 results were worth the wait. First the girls won decisively 6-0. Alyssa had a hat trick, Mariah, Allison and Hannah each had 1 goal. Their record is 5-3 which means they will finish the year with a winning record. This was another shutout with the defense only allowing 1 shot on goal. They have only conceded 4 goals all year while scoring 19. Much better passing and a clean game.

Scoring leaders for the girls
MacKenzie 4
Hannah 4-

The boys won a very hard fought 2-0 victory to also raise their record to 5-3 meaning they too will have a winning record. JJ had his first goal in 4 years of playing soccer. He had a hard SOT in the 1st half and took a header from a player, battled 5 players, still controlling the ball and blast a shot high into the net over the goalies head. It was a strong kick and I was very proud. It was the insurance goal we needed to secure the victory. It was their second straight shut out. Again the boys dominated the game and controlled the pace and flow of the game. The passes were clean today and the boys really have come on. This again shows how strong this team is getting.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Week 7 games

A split this week for my teams. The girls lost 0-2 in a hard fought game. This is their 3rd loss of the year which ironically was a shutout for the third time. My girls only win when they score at least one goal (it doesn't make sense I know but they have not lost a game when they have scored at all). It was silent Saturday for the soccer club which meant that no parents or coaches could talk. The girls were great and really talked to each other and moved the game along. The girls though were flat and could not really get their open game going.

The boys however were amazing. A big 2-0 win to raise their record to 4-3. JJ my son had 3 SOT (shots on target) and missed a goal by about two inches. They were actually his first three shots on goal ever. The team only had enough to field a full team meaning we had no subs. The boys played an awesome game had possession of the ball over 75% of the time, and controlled the ball well. The boys are playing better every week. Again since this was silent Saturday, I or my assistant could not give instruction but the boys were calling each other for the ball, passing well and executing plays we set up.

JJ today even had a pass that was awesome, he was dribbling the ball towards the goal, overran for a second dropped back and curled a perfect pass to our striker. The striker had the ball taken away but it was an awesome pass. JJ is really coming along.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I have to give a great deal of kudos to the US MNT for their big win over the Swiss NT the other day. I am a big fan and supporter of Bob Bradley and give him credit for not shying away from tough competition. Sure the US could have played other teams but their were a lot of teams in competition for various tournaments. The US could have played an easy CONCACAF opponent but decided to go to a place where they have had poor showings.

Big win in a tough place to play.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

6th week update

The girls continued their winning ways. They won their 4th game to go 4-2 by a score of 3-0. It was a great game and the girls did not allow any shots on goal. The girls are starting to pass and spread out more. Scoring leaders thus far

Allysa-4 goals
Mackenzie-4 goals
Hannah-3 goals
Mariah-2 goals
Allison-1 goal

The boys lost a tough game 0-1. It was a great up and down game with the other team scoring a goal with less than 2 minutes to go. This we played has not lost this year and is clearly the best team. All I know is that our boys played their hearts out and would have been very happy with a draw. But an 0-1 loss is a very good result.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Soccer in Philadelphia

It is about time that Philly gets a pro soccer team. Philly does have the 4th biggest media market and has been without a major soccer team for years. I honestly think that within a few years soccer could be the 4th biggest sport in Philadelphia. If done right meaning marketing, pricing and quality of play. The flyers have very expensive tickets, along with the sixers and eagles. Since soccer is played by so many kids, market family type packages with reasonable concession prices and the people will come.

I am hoping that MLS, the State, the city of Chester and the public can get together and get Philly and MLS team.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Record Updates

The boys had their first shutout victory this week, 2-0 one boy finally scored his first goal. They have raised their record to 3-2

The girls had a tough 0-1 loss. Their record is also 3-2. The team this year has only let up 2 goals. Ironically they lost both those games. When they score, they are 3-0

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Soccer Pics

We had our annual family fun day with the soccer club this past Sunday. It was a fun time and over 600 kids and their families were there. I would love to be the owner of the pizza shop that sold all of the pizza. They probably sold over 100 pizzas to the club. The good thing about this is that it was free. I have to commend the club for the amount of time and effort it is to put on something like this not counting the expenses involved. Even Abby who is not a member of the club had a good time. She loved the moon bounces which there were three.
The best part of the day was the pictures. Talking with the parents prior to our pictures was nice. There are such nice families involved here and the kids get along so well.
Especially with Hannah's team, the girls really get along well. Some of them have played for me for all four seasons I have coached and it really helps.

the coach

Team pics

cute kids

more pics

Family Fun Ridley United SC 2007

Here are some pictures from the Ridley United Soccer club family fun day. All of the players and their families get together to have a day of fun and get pictures taken