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The List - 25 things obstructing the U.S from becoming a soccer powerhouse

Discussion in 'Soccer in the USA' started by jfalstaff, Jul 1, 2012.

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  1. jfalstaff

    jfalstaff Member

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    http://blog.3four3.com/2011/10/24/things-that-are-wrong-with-us-soccer/

    This is from the blog 3four3 which is published by youth coaches from Barcelona-USA. If you get a chance check out the blog. These guys know what they are talking about.

    The List - 25 things obstructing the U.S from becoming a soccer powerhouse

    1. Poor player selection at the professional and national team level.
    2. Low-level professional and national team coaching.
    3. College soccer is the main pipeline to MLS.
    4. No sporting accountability for college soccer coaches.
    5. Shortage of powerful player agents with a credible global network.
    6. European and south american clubs do not shop for players here.
    7. College soccer season is short.
    8. Coaching at the youth and collegiate level is pathetic.
    9. Pay-to-play at the youth level filters out much, if not most, of the talent.
    10. Parental influence at the youth level.
    11. Coach employment and club prosperity at the youth level is overly dependent on winning records.
    12. Business objectives are not aligned with player development at the youth level.
    13. We have people with no real soccer DNA occupying influential positions at all levels.
    14. The American soccer media, from match commentary to bloggers, lacks a rich understanding of the game.
    15. Thin scouting network.
    16. Unsophisticated scouts.
    17. An obsession with statistics.
    18. A docile fan base.
    19. Logistical problems due to US geography.
    20. MLS operates under a single entity structure.
    21. No promotion/relegation at the pro level.
    22. No significant MLS reserve league.
    23. No 3rd party ownership of players allowed within MLS.
    24. “Speed, strength, and power” is preferred over “technical, intelligent, and tactically rich” players.
    25. “Popularity” of the sport.
     


  2. Sebsasour

    Sebsasour Member+

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    The single entity ownership system is needed for the MLS. 2/3 of the league would have folded years ago with out it.
     
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  3. Potowmack

    Potowmack Member+

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    I'm not really familiar with what goes on at the youth development level. But it's interesting that only a couple of the points on the list have to do with MLS, and the validity of those points is highly debatable.
     
  4. Ironkick14

    Ironkick14 Member+

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    It's needed for now and the near future, but it promotes slow and steady growth, and will never get us to superpower level. But, it's the right way to run the league for at least the present.

    Also, a few of these points are based on cliche and are just wrong. Like 14. Some commentators are not good. Some are very good. The same goes for bloggers. Some know what they are talking about, and some spout crap without research completely based on assumptions and stereotypes. Kinda like 3four3 for instance.
     


  5. Kot Matroskin

    Kot Matroskin Member

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    I almost stopped reading at #1.

    "Player selection" at the national team level is preventing the USA from becoming a powerhouse? Exactly who is being left out that would make any difference?

    As for the rest, some are debatable, some are self-evident, and some have been discussed ad nauseum, for example, the limitations of college soccer.

    College soccer has been the main pipeline of Americans (and some internationals) to the pros in the US for years. You can say, "I wish we had a development infrastructure like other countries", but this is what we have at the moment. Personally, I think we should embrace it and build it up. Work with the NCAA to lengthen the season and modify the rules so as to match the pro rules more closely. The coaching is getting better with time, and fan interest is growing. The bigger college soccer gets, the better the product will be.
     
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  6. Potowmack

    Potowmack Member+

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    It's also not MLS' job to help make the NT better. If MLS' structure is having a negative effect on the NT (debatable), that is unfortunate, but irrelevant to MLS.
     
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  7. Elninho

    Elninho Member+

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    Pro/rel again? Really?
     
  8. drdi

    drdi Member

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    well, from an america living in portugal, that tries to watch all possible mls and usmnt games in dificult schedules i have to say some things
    1- the usa is, now, a pretty strong team, with good-unfortunately not extraordinary yet-players- johnson, bradley, howard, jones, edu, dempsey, donovan, gomez, cameron, klajestain, adu, gomez, chandler(?), altidore, but also brad davis, myers, bruin, kenny cooper, mc inerney, luis gil, sapong, hartmann, zusi, feilhabber and many,many others i see from mls games that have quality enough to be considered to belong to our usmnt
    2-the average attendance of mls is , perhaps, three times the average of the portuguese league, and it seemcups to get bigger.
    3-mls, because it operates in two extremely big countries, also is a tool to provide better competition
    4-i am going to watch games from nasl to see if the level of play is good-for what i read nasl clubs performed extremely well in the lamar hunt cup
    5-there is no doubt that the development program at least, with some competent scouts and coaches will provide better and better players
    6-for what i see mls clubs now have a much better management than 2 years ago-and the fans
    so,i really think we are going in the right direction and, with time, we will have one of the best teams around-we only need one or two really superstars to ignite the interest of the people in football.
     
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  9. blacksun

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    Pretty poor list. These are the only ones I agree with. The others are either simply not true, or not significant problems.
     
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  10. CCSUltra

    CCSUltra Member+

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    This list pretty much shows that they don't. But, you agree with what they say, so they must be geniuses. People can bitch and moan all they want about single entity and MLS, but what league would there be without it? You think we'd be anywhere near as good as we are if we were left with the patchwork of minor leagues run by fly-by-night ownership groups? The entire list shows a fundamental lack of understanding of the realties soccer faces in this country.

    You've been so wrong time and time again on this board, I don't know why you'd expect anything to change. Want me to elaborate more?
     
  11. jfalstaff

    jfalstaff Member

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    and you're expertise is what exactly?

    I think I'll listen to the guys who actually know what they're talking about and are heavily involved in the game.
     
  12. CCSUltra

    CCSUltra Member+

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    No, you choose to ignore lots of people that are heavily involved in the game simply because they don't agree with your idiotic view of American soccer.
     
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  13. Potowmack

    Potowmack Member+

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    These guys seem to be arguing that MLS is somehow an impediment to US soccer. Which ignores the very important fact that MLS is probably the single most important and positive thing to happen to American soccer in a generation or so.
     
  14. jfalstaff

    jfalstaff Member

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    I wouldn't say an impediment to US Soccer.

    But they would say that as MLS is currently structured it is just one obstruction(in a list of many) that will prevent us from becoming a soccer powerhouse.
     
  15. CCSUltra

    CCSUltra Member+

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    You have never answered this question. Where would US Soccer be without MLS? What league would we have?
     
  16. HailtotheKing

    HailtotheKing Member+

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    In terms of US Soccer and Soccer in the US, no they don't.

    ... is absolute crap.
     
  17. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    NASL and USLPRO.

    How much popular would they be with out MLS? very debatable, But I am sure USLPRO Seattle Sounders would not be pulling 35K+ people to every single game.
     
  18. CCSUltra

    CCSUltra Member+

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    Neither NASL or USL-Pro would look like they do today without MLS. Look at what USL was before MLS.
     
  19. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    Well NASL or USLPRO would not look like MLS does today.

    How would they look f MLS never came to existence, who knows, probably the same as they do now (in not so great shape).

    I believe APSL was the top league right before and when MLS came to be (they were not D1 under USSF), they folded the year (or 2) after MLS started I think.

    I am not sure if USL is much different now than in 1996.

    My point was there would be soccer leagues in the USA if MLS did not exist, but their level would be way below the MLS current level, and they would not have pro/rel IMO.
     
  20. CCSUltra

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    Exactly. They wouldn't even be close.


    D2 and D3 are in way better shape than they were back in the 90s.


    USISL Select League was D2 at the time (officially), I believe. Once the APSL lost out on D1 sanctioning, it merged with USISL Select League to form the A-League. But essentially, you had a nationwide league run by fly-by-night organizations. It was a disaster.


    Vastly different.

    Right. It wouldn't even come close to MLS and the USMNT wouldn't be anywhere near as good as we are now. And we're actually a pretty good team right now. That, however, doesn't mean there isn't lots of room for improvement.

    Essentially, you want to know the biggest thing that's stopping the US from becoming a powerhouse? Time. The rest of the world had a 50 year head start. We have to overcome all of that, and we've made great strides in a short period of time. That growth will continue.
     
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  21. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    I don't know, USL did have a few teams fold mid year last season (the PR teams) LA looks shaky.

    NASL is heavily dependent on Traffic money right now (kind of like MLS in 2002).

    I think people overestimate the straight of our lower leagues; I am hopeful they will make it, thanks to the raise in popularity of soccer, with the World cup, Eurocup and yes the MSL.

    1 thing we do have now that we did not have back in 1996 is D2 standards, that is USSF getting their shit straight for a little while.

    Now the biggest USANT result in the WC was in 2002 with making it to the quarterfinals, that was when MLS was at a low point.

    Now one thing we do have going for us that the 25 points (most of them BS I think) does not talk about is zee Germans-Americans (and the other players like Gatt and Gyau).

    But hey Jeffalsestar is just a hatter so what do we expect from him.

    I say is the NFL, MLB, NHL and NBA.

    We did have soccer in this country before; NAFL was around 1880's to the 1930's. (I think we had pro teams before Brazil did).

    We just went in multiple long spells where soccer lost popularity in the country after ASL and then after NASL1 folded.

    NAFL 28 years
    NASL 16 years
    MLS 16 years

    That is 60 years of soccer.

    Sadly huge gaps between each league, that has hurt us very much (in terms of soccer quality).
     
  22. chapka

    chapka Member+

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    Just to be clear: this blog is not run by Barcelona's youth academy or American wing or anything like that. Barcelona USA is "affiliated" with Barca only in the sense that it's an offshoot of an official chapter of the Barca fan club.

    That said, it's one of the rare youth clubs that is either mostly or completely free for players. So it's not surprising that most of the items on the list boil down to:

    1. Pay-for-play youth teams lets talented but poor kids slip through the cracks in the system
    2. College soccer sucks and our kids don't need it
    3. Kids who don't play on pay-for-play youth teams or go to college have trouble finding a path to the pros
    4. We should be able to own our players' contracts and make money by selling them

    That's about half the list. Those are areas they have real first-hand knowledge about, and I don't think many people would disagree with their assessments, unless it's to say they're too hard on college soccer or to point out the obvious drawbacks of a third-party ownership system.

    The other claims--the ones that have nothing to do with youth soccer--range from cliches to crazy talk. But this is, after all, a blogger that says that if a "real" coach ever took over the U.S. national team, he'd fire all the current players and discover hundreds of Barcelona-quality players that the current system is ignoring. He also touted the USA U-23 win over Mexico in their February friendly as a sign that Caleb Porter, a real coach at last, was going to storm through the Olympics and shock the world. He regularly calls everyone who disagrees with him "monkeys."

    To be brief: he is a True Believer. He's convinced himself that if he (or one of his favored Magic Coaches) was in charge, and they read the Holy Book of Barcelona and did exactly what it said, the USA men would be transformed overnight.

    Tell me again why I should listen to his broken record any more than I listen to Ted Westervelt's?
     
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  23. jfalstaff

    jfalstaff Member

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    Actually the blog appears to be written by coaches from the Barcalona USA academy.

    I don't know who Ted Westevelt is.

    You can choose to buy into this list or not. I don't care. I brought it up for discussion.

    I didn't know anything about our youth development and I've been reading this blog pretty consistently and I find it informative and authoritative.

    since my background is economics I'm whole heartily in agreement that single entity and no pro/rel will obstruct us from becoming a soccer powerhouse.

    anything else is just your opinion and just mine. Neither of us our authorities on the subject matter.
     
  24. CCSUltra

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    Which is not in anyway affiliated with FC Barcelona.

    A pro/rel zealot who is jus as uninformed as you are.

    Your points have been discussed to death on this forum already.

    The first part of your sentence explains the second part.

    Yes, there are problems with our youth development. Lots of those problems are starting to be addressed. Pay-to-play is an issue, but it's starting to go away. These changes don't happen instantaneously.

    Except that it won't.

    I've worked in pro soccer in this country. I have friends that still do. There are lots of people on this forum that have. I'm not an authority, but I'm willing to bet I know more about the challenges the sport faces than you do.

    BTW, I'd love if you'd actually respond to ANY sort of criticism.
     
  25. Jewelz510

    Jewelz510 Member+

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    That's all I got out of your post. See, I only read things that conform to my own rigid beliefs no matter how uninformed they are.
     
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