09 August 2009

Sam's Soccer

My six year old, Sam , has been setting the soccer pitch alight this winter featuring weekly on his team's score sheet, often multiple times per game. I was therefore stoked to be asked by his coach if he was 'available' for a rep team to represent our Albany club in a local tournament. Naturally I confirmed he was.

Sam and his coach celebrating a goal during a club game.

We had the tournament today. The intensity levels were certainly a step or two up from what Sam plays each weekend. Today he came up against opposing teams full of talented youngsters.

Sam's team, the Albany All stars, were looking pretty sharp in the Arsenal replica uniform and it was pleasing to see them win their pool after two wins by 4-1 and 4-2. Sam took little while to adjust to the pace of the games only really finding his feet in the second pool game after a wee pep talk from Dad.

The team were the narrowly beaten 2 -1 in a toughly fought semi final. Sam unfortunately only got a few minutes (the games are only 12 minutes each half) game time in the second half of this game as I guess the coach was opting for the strongest five players for the majority of the game.

It was easy to see that even at this age the sports stars of tomorrow really do stand out head and shoulders above the rest. Some of these kids just hate to lose and there were some tears from a few after the semi final lose. I could tell these were genuine tears bought on by the pain of losing, just as I'm sure a many a World Cup or Premier league player has probably shed after losing a final.

One not so pleasant aspect of following childrens sport is the behaviour of some of the parents on the sidelines. At one stage during one of our pool games, three or four fathers were all marching up and down the sideline just barking orders at their children in the opposing team. The same would happen when a player came off the field after a substitution. Sometimes I think we all need to remember the reason why we play sport and that is to have fun. I'm all for encouraging our kids to be winners but they've got to be having fun at the same time.

Sam has one more tournament this season in a few weeks and now that we have had a taste for these age group tournaments I cant wait for more.


scott keeps running August 10, 2009 at 5:31 AM  

Sam's awesome.

I'm glad they don't like losing. ;)

Ewen August 11, 2009 at 5:26 PM  

Go Sam!

Good point about "sideline parents". Isn't it enough to see their kids having fun and enjoying sport?

And we won't mention Rugby Union. But The Ashes is OK ;)

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