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US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

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US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by OldSoccerSouthD on 17/08/18, 10:46 am


For years we dominated the game.....nobody could touch us....every now and then a Norway or Germany or Japan gave us tough games. Unfortunately we dominated the women's game when barely any other country in the world was paying any attention to it....

We have always had a TON of girls playing soccer.....in the 90's it was more than all the other countries in the world COMBINED!!!! We (Women's Soccer fans) cared....nobody else in the rest of the world gave a damn about the women's side of the sport...

The fact that countries like Brazil and Norway that didn't have leagues (and most still don't), college soccer, or any organized women's soccer actually competed well against us was a warning sign that we didn't take seriously enough.....

The truth is that it was just a matter of time before historically good and traditional men's powerhouses started to focus a little bit on the women's game.....WE on the other hand, kept doing what we do best.....Status Quo....we bitch about LH, ECNL, D1 College, bla bla bla...... but not much has been done to improve the game....after all, we are the USA and rule women's soccer......

WHile it not too late, now reality is starting to set in.... The rest of the world that paid ZERO attention to the sport 20 years ago, now pays just a little more attention to it and boy...what a change....

In the last 2 years we have seen a huge improvement by girls all over the world...while our game has not improved....it is a recipe for disaster.....

This U20 Women's World Cup this month was a DISASTER for a country with more than 50% of all women's soccer players in the world!!!!! .......Spain DOMINATED more than half of the game.....our girls looked lost....the BFS focus (Big Fast Strong) and mentality in our country has met its match.... It is called SKILLS!!!

This should serve as a HUGE WARNING SIGN for what is to come, if we don't get our act together....within 10-15 years, we run the risk of becoming as relevant internationally as our USMNT ............




https://www.socceramerica.com/publications/article/79177/usa-fails-historically-at-under-20-womens-world-c.html

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Big Ern on 17/08/18, 11:07 am

OldSoccerSouthD wrote:
For years we dominated the game.....nobody could touch us....every now and then a Norway or Germany or Japan gave us tough games. Unfortunately we dominated the women's  game when barely any other country in the world was paying any attention to it....

We have always had a TON of girls playing soccer.....in the 90's it was more than all the other countries in the world COMBINED!!!!    We (Women's Soccer fans) cared....nobody else in the rest of the world gave a damn about the women's side of the sport...

The fact that countries like Brazil and Norway that didn't have leagues (and most still don't), college soccer, or any organized women's soccer actually competed well against us was a warning sign that we didn't take seriously enough.....

The truth is that it was just a matter of time before historically good and traditional men's powerhouses started to focus a little bit on the women's game.....WE on the other hand, kept doing what we do best.....Status Quo....we bitch about LH, ECNL, D1 College, bla bla bla...... but not much has been done to improve the game....after all, we are the USA and rule women's soccer......

WHile it not too late, now reality is starting to set in.... The rest of the world that paid ZERO attention to the sport 20 years ago, now pays just a little more attention to it and boy...what a change....

In the last 2 years we have seen a huge improvement by girls all over the world...while our game has not improved....it is a recipe for disaster.....

This U20 Women's World Cup this month was a DISASTER for a country with more than 50% of all women's soccer players in the world!!!!!    .......Spain DOMINATED more than half of the game.....our girls looked lost....the BFS focus (Big Fast Strong) and mentality in our country has met its match.... It is called SKILLS!!!  

This should serve as a HUGE WARNING SIGN for what is to come, if we don't get our act together....within 10-15 years, we run the risk of becoming as relevant internationally as our USMNT ............

https://www.socceramerica.com/publications/article/79177/usa-fails-historically-at-under-20-womens-world-c.html

Scary stuff indeed Sir.  

But I'd swap one word (two really if we're considering singular/plural here Wink ) ...

IQ for "SKILLS"

In general at our highest levels, we lack creativity and knowledge of the game on and off the ball.  In my opinion, we'd literally need a cultural shift -- fewer coaches, more kids on their own playing 'street ball' -- to overcome the current trend on the women's side.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Mellowski on 17/08/18, 11:26 am

US did not decline...the rest of the world started playing women soccer Smile

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Big Ern on 17/08/18, 11:28 am

Mellowski wrote:US did not decline...the rest of the world started playing women soccer Smile

Touche Mell!

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Balotelli45 on 17/08/18, 11:38 am

Mellowski wrote:US did not decline...the rest of the world started playing women soccer Smile

I agree....

I was recently watching an 04G "National Championship" soccer tourney. One of the teams was an FCD team..Neither team could string 3 passes together. It was ugly soccer. It was a wrestling kickball match.. If the "Big, fast, strategy" does not change, US women soccer will be in trouble.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Big Ern on 17/08/18, 11:50 am

Balotelli45 wrote:
Mellowski wrote:US did not decline...the rest of the world started playing women soccer Smile

I agree....

I was recently watching an 04G "National Championship" soccer tourney. One of the teams was an FCD team..Neither team could string 3 passes together.  It was ugly soccer. It was a wrestling kickball match.. If the "Big, fast, strategy" does not change, US women soccer will be in trouble.

For what it's worth -- the FCD team you're referencing here is their 3rd tier in that age group.

But yes, couldn't agree more ... not pretty.  By U14/15 or so, you'd think we (USA) need to have better IQ and touch already, to turn the tide of the current trend internationally by the time these kids are U17+.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by brazos on 17/08/18, 12:39 pm

This should not be directed at FCD or any other local clubs but if you watch any level of youth soccer including DA/ECNL you will disappointed with first touch and soccer IQ. The big, fast and aggressive mentality is alive and well.

There are pockets where you see some quality stuff but it should be more consistent with all the exceptional players we have in this region. Even the 3rd tier team at any club has talented DDs on the field so that is not an excuse.

I hope the rest of the world continues to invest in girls and women's soccer as competition is good for all.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by TxFutbal on 17/08/18, 12:49 pm

[/quote]
In general at our highest levels, we lack creativity and knowledge of the game on and off the ball.  In my opinion, we'd literally need a cultural shift -- fewer coaches, more kids on their own playing 'street ball' -- to overcome the current trend on the women's side.[/quote]

Wait..  Isn't this the opposite of what DA is doing?  Isn't this why the men's side is so bad because we are teaching kids soccer by number?  I'm confused...

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Big Ern on 17/08/18, 01:00 pm

In general at our highest levels, we lack creativity and knowledge of the game on and off the ball.  In my opinion, we'd literally need a cultural shift -- fewer coaches, more kids on their own playing 'street ball' -- to overcome the current trend on the women's side.[/quote]

Wait..  Isn't this the opposite of what DA is doing?  Isn't this why the men's side is so bad because we are teaching kids soccer by number?  I'm confused...[/quote]

Indeed.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Lefty on 17/08/18, 02:19 pm

BFS provides instant gratification (winning today's game at whatever age group you are talking about be it u5-u18) and sells to the paying customers.  

The independent clubs and all the 'professional' coaches are just selling the customers what they want and demand.

Who is it in the US system that is focused on the identification and long term development of the players who could contribute to the national team in the future over winning todays game?

The US system is just not set up for development of Soccer IQ and/or skills.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Lefty on 17/08/18, 02:33 pm

Big Ern wrote:
OldSoccerSouthD wrote:
For years we dominated the game.....nobody could touch us....every now and then a Norway or Germany or Japan gave us tough games. Unfortunately we dominated the women's  game when barely any other country in the world was paying any attention to it....

We have always had a TON of girls playing soccer.....in the 90's it was more than all the other countries in the world COMBINED!!!!    We (Women's Soccer fans) cared....nobody else in the rest of the world gave a damn about the women's side of the sport...

The fact that countries like Brazil and Norway that didn't have leagues (and most still don't), college soccer, or any organized women's soccer actually competed well against us was a warning sign that we didn't take seriously enough.....

The truth is that it was just a matter of time before historically good and traditional men's powerhouses started to focus a little bit on the women's game.....WE on the other hand, kept doing what we do best.....Status Quo....we bitch about LH, ECNL, D1 College, bla bla bla...... but not much has been done to improve the game....after all, we are the USA and rule women's soccer......

WHile it not too late, now reality is starting to set in.... The rest of the world that paid ZERO attention to the sport 20 years ago, now pays just a little more attention to it and boy...what a change....

In the last 2 years we have seen a huge improvement by girls all over the world...while our game has not improved....it is a recipe for disaster.....

This U20 Women's World Cup this month was a DISASTER for a country with more than 50% of all women's soccer players in the world!!!!!    .......Spain DOMINATED more than half of the game.....our girls looked lost....the BFS focus (Big Fast Strong) and mentality in our country has met its match.... It is called SKILLS!!!  

This should serve as a HUGE WARNING SIGN for what is to come, if we don't get our act together....within 10-15 years, we run the risk of becoming as relevant internationally as our USMNT ............

https://www.socceramerica.com/publications/article/79177/usa-fails-historically-at-under-20-womens-world-c.html

Scary stuff indeed Sir.  

But I'd swap one word (two really if we're considering singular/plural here Wink ) ...

IQ for "SKILLS"

In general at our highest levels, we lack creativity and knowledge of the game on and off the ball.  In my opinion, we'd literally need a cultural shift -- fewer coaches, more kids on their own playing 'street ball' -- to overcome the current trend on the women's side.

Agree.

If your DD is not spending 4x as much time working on her skills individually as she does at an organized practice each week, would not expect her to ever be considered a truly standout skill player.

Remember my HS Bball coach telling us our freshman year that we should not expect to ever start for the varsity if we did not do 10x the time on our own (individual work or street games with OLDER players) relative to what we spent in practice.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by sprint on 17/08/18, 03:20 pm


I know I'm in the minority but don't see the US Woman's program as being on a decline. At the senior level the Women are still the best in the world and I think will continue to be.

The US has always based its Women's teams on BFS and it works. They still have the BFS players and even a skilled team won't be able to beat them. When your fastest ( Alex Morgan, Pugh) are that much faster than everyone else and your strongest are that much stronger, you will win.

BFS works a lot of the time and tiki taka skilled soccer is incredibly complex and hard to perfect and it can still be beaten by size and speed on any given day.

I think the US Women are fine and will continue to dominate but time will tell.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Cornydogonastick on 17/08/18, 06:08 pm

Size and speed can't defy the IQ and creativity that is the skills of the game. Defenders are faster and stronger and the world stage is very evident even more so in our college arena. Unless the US Soccer philosophy starts coaching the skills its inevitable the decline and we will see alot more evidence of this over time.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by RightWingDad on 18/08/18, 11:08 pm

Lefty wrote:
Big Ern wrote:
OldSoccerSouthD wrote:
For years we dominated the game.....nobody could touch us....every now and then a Norway or Germany or Japan gave us tough games. Unfortunately we dominated the women's  game when barely any other country in the world was paying any attention to it....

We have always had a TON of girls playing soccer.....in the 90's it was more than all the other countries in the world COMBINED!!!!    We (Women's Soccer fans) cared....nobody else in the rest of the world gave a damn about the women's side of the sport...

The fact that countries like Brazil and Norway that didn't have leagues (and most still don't), college soccer, or any organized women's soccer actually competed well against us was a warning sign that we didn't take seriously enough.....

The truth is that it was just a matter of time before historically good and traditional men's powerhouses started to focus a little bit on the women's game.....WE on the other hand, kept doing what we do best.....Status Quo....we bitch about LH, ECNL, D1 College, bla bla bla...... but not much has been done to improve the game....after all, we are the USA and rule women's soccer......

WHile it not too late, now reality is starting to set in.... The rest of the world that paid ZERO attention to the sport 20 years ago, now pays just a little more attention to it and boy...what a change....

In the last 2 years we have seen a huge improvement by girls all over the world...while our game has not improved....it is a recipe for disaster.....

This U20 Women's World Cup this month was a DISASTER for a country with more than 50% of all women's soccer players in the world!!!!!    .......Spain DOMINATED more than half of the game.....our girls looked lost....the BFS focus (Big Fast Strong) and mentality in our country has met its match.... It is called SKILLS!!!  

This should serve as a HUGE WARNING SIGN for what is to come, if we don't get our act together....within 10-15 years, we run the risk of becoming as relevant internationally as our USMNT ............

https://www.socceramerica.com/publications/article/79177/usa-fails-historically-at-under-20-womens-world-c.html

Scary stuff indeed Sir.  

But I'd swap one word (two really if we're considering singular/plural here Wink ) ...

IQ for "SKILLS"

In general at our highest levels, we lack creativity and knowledge of the game on and off the ball.  In my opinion, we'd literally need a cultural shift -- fewer coaches, more kids on their own playing 'street ball' -- to overcome the current trend on the women's side.

Agree.  

If your DD is not spending 4x as much time working on her skills individually as she does at an organized practice each week, would not expect her to ever be considered a truly standout skill player.

Remember my HS Bball coach telling us our freshman year that we should not expect to ever start for the varsity if we did not do 10x the time on our own (individual work or street games with OLDER players) relative to what we spent in practice.

Somewhere I hear Malcolm Gladwell saying "yep, that's what I've been saying all along....#10000HoursBaby"

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Cornydogonastick on 20/08/18, 11:35 am

The cause and effect of our system in the next decade will really answer alot of debate questions for and against. At that point it will take alot of time to make up and change. It will be interesting how the pundits answer to these facts.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by CardinalRule on 22/08/18, 09:23 am

I agree 100% with the lack of "IQ" comments. Too many players on the US Women and Men's national Uxx team look lost on the field when their style of play is neutralized. They simply can't adapt and adjust their style of play, and many of them are simply out classed from a skill perspective.

I wish that was the USWNT’s only problem, but I don't think it is. I think the process of identifying the "top" talent is extremely flawed and riddled with shortcuts, hidden agendas and cronyism. Just take a look at the USWNT rosters (U15 and up) at any point in time. It's overloaded with players from a couple states and clubs. Start with Texas. It’s vastly underrepresented with the exception of two clubs; Solar and FCD clubs. Some states look suspiciously overrepresented from a population perspective (Virginia, Georgia and Colorado combined have 3-4X number of players on the USWNT roster at each age with about 4 million less people than Texas), and some clubs have a statistically improbable track record of churning out talent. I can only imagine the challenges of identifying talent in a country as dispersed and populated as the US with limited resources (coaches and $). I am sure viewing footage of the many thousands of teams in the country and identifying top players would be next to impossible. DA does nothing to address that problem. It simply injects a more insular selection and filtering process. Unfortunately, we are leaving many of our best players sitting at home, because they aren’t playing at the right club and/or in the right state. If we keep picking the biggest, strongest and fastest from the DA farm system, the replication of the USMNT disaster will be complete.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Big Ern on 22/08/18, 10:18 am

CardinalRule wrote:I agree 100% with the lack of "IQ" comments.  Too many players on the US Women and Men's national Uxx team look lost on the field when their style of play is neutralized.  They simply can't adapt and adjust their style of play, and many of them are simply out classed from a skill perspective.    

I wish that was the USWNT’s only problem, but I don't think it is.  I think the process of identifying the "top" talent is extremely flawed and riddled with shortcuts, hidden agendas and cronyism.  Just take a look at the USWNT rosters (U15 and up) at any point in time.  It's overloaded with players from a couple states and clubs.  Start with Texas. It’s vastly underrepresented with the exception of two clubs; Solar and FCD clubs.  Some states look suspiciously overrepresented from a population perspective (Virginia, Georgia and Colorado combined have 3-4X number of players on the USWNT roster at each age with about 4 million less people than Texas), and some clubs have a statistically improbable track record of churning out talent.  I can only imagine the challenges of identifying talent in a country as dispersed and populated as the US with limited resources (coaches and $).  I am sure viewing footage of the many thousands of teams in the country and identifying top players would be next to impossible.  DA does nothing to address that problem.  It simply injects a more insular selection and filtering process.  Unfortunately, we are leaving many of our best players sitting at home, because they aren’t playing at the right club and/or in the right state.   If we keep picking the biggest, strongest and fastest from the DA farm system, the replication of the USMNT disaster will be complete.

Cardinal --

Dude ...  cheers

One question though ... Did you feel this way about the ECNL as well, before GDA came about?

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by DeltaTauChi on 22/08/18, 10:38 am

Big Ern wrote:
CardinalRule wrote:I agree 100% with the lack of "IQ" comments.  Too many players on the US Women and Men's national Uxx team look lost on the field when their style of play is neutralized.  They simply can't adapt and adjust their style of play, and many of them are simply out classed from a skill perspective.    

I wish that was the USWNT’s only problem, but I don't think it is.  I think the process of identifying the "top" talent is extremely flawed and riddled with shortcuts, hidden agendas and cronyism.  Just take a look at the USWNT rosters (U15 and up) at any point in time.  It's overloaded with players from a couple states and clubs.  Start with Texas. It’s vastly underrepresented with the exception of two clubs; Solar and FCD clubs.  Some states look suspiciously overrepresented from a population perspective (Virginia, Georgia and Colorado combined have 3-4X number of players on the USWNT roster at each age with about 4 million less people than Texas), and some clubs have a statistically improbable track record of churning out talent.  I can only imagine the challenges of identifying talent in a country as dispersed and populated as the US with limited resources (coaches and $).  I am sure viewing footage of the many thousands of teams in the country and identifying top players would be next to impossible.  DA does nothing to address that problem.  It simply injects a more insular selection and filtering process.  Unfortunately, we are leaving many of our best players sitting at home, because they aren’t playing at the right club and/or in the right state.   If we keep picking the biggest, strongest and fastest from the DA farm system, the replication of the USMNT disaster will be complete.

Cardinal --

Dude ...  cheers

One question though ... Did you feel this way about the ECNL as well, before GDA came about?

I'm just curious as to which players currently at Texans/Sting/D'Feeters/LP/Fever/Spirit/etc Cardinal considers to be better than the Solar & FCD girls currently rep'n NTX on the YNT's?

The next 2 or 3 that I think you could make an argument for also play for, you guessed it, Solar and FCD right now.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Lefty on 22/08/18, 11:03 am

CardinalRule wrote:I agree 100% with the lack of "IQ" comments.  Too many players on the US Women and Men's national Uxx team look lost on the field when their style of play is neutralized.  They simply can't adapt and adjust their style of play, and many of them are simply out classed from a skill perspective.    

I wish that was the USWNT’s only problem, but I don't think it is.  I think the process of identifying the "top" talent is extremely flawed and riddled with shortcuts, hidden agendas and cronyism.  Just take a look at the USWNT rosters (U15 and up) at any point in time.  It's overloaded with players from a couple states and clubs.  Start with Texas. It’s vastly underrepresented with the exception of two clubs; Solar and FCD clubs.  Some states look suspiciously overrepresented from a population perspective (Virginia, Georgia and Colorado combined have 3-4X number of players on the USWNT roster at each age with about 4 million less people than Texas), and some clubs have a statistically improbable track record of churning out talent.  I can only imagine the challenges of identifying talent in a country as dispersed and populated as the US with limited resources (coaches and $).  I am sure viewing footage of the many thousands of teams in the country and identifying top players would be next to impossible.  DA does nothing to address that problem.  It simply injects a more insular selection and filtering process.  Unfortunately, we are leaving many of our best players sitting at home, because they aren’t playing at the right club and/or in the right state.   If we keep picking the biggest, strongest and fastest from the DA farm system, the replication of the USMNT disaster will be complete.

No fan of the BFS mentality, and not suggesting the current process is perfect, would love to hear your ideas on how to make the identification and selection process better?

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by earbucket on 22/08/18, 11:51 am

One recent example of the system working for talent identification is on the boy's side. Chris Richards from Alabama. Spotted at an ODP competition two years ago. Recruited to play at a non-MLS DA for Houston Texans. Started year on U16 team moved to U18 team in spring and team won DA national championship. He and another player recruited to FCD DA where both have journeyed to Bayern Munich for short training stints. Richards got some playing time with first team in preseason games and will play with BM's academy teams.

Richards was eligible for 2017 U17 team, but was not picked and I don't believe he was considered. He will definitely be in consideration now for national youth teams and perhaps the senior team.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by Cornydogonastick on 22/08/18, 02:06 pm

We will reap what we sow.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by HomeStretch on 22/08/18, 04:34 pm

Parents have been harping on this BFS mantra for a decade. It may have been the issue 8 years ago, but it's not today. Our national programs  try hard to identify skillful, technical players. To a large extent, that's exactly what they've been doing....prioritizing INDIVIDUAL skill over BFS. 

The issue is as already mentioned...we are terrible at identifying high soccer IQ players, and our youth national coaches appear clueless at putting together solid teams. We're great  at identifying 1v1 dribblers and players who have nice close control...trying to make a team out of them works great for padding our stats in CONCACAF, but not so much anymore when facing real teams.

It can't be BFS when the teams we put out these days are no longer physically or athletically dominant. Most of our mids at all levels are slow as molasses. 

We're trying to choose technical players, at very young ages, but haven't perfected how to do it.

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by OldSoccerSouthD on 22/08/18, 05:20 pm

HomeStretch wrote:Parents have been harping on this BFS mantra for a decade. It may have been the issue 8 years ago, but it's not today. Our national programs  try hard to identify skillful, technical players. To a large extent, that's exactly what they've been doing....prioritizing INDIVIDUAL skill over BFS. 

The issue is as already mentioned...we are terrible at identifying high soccer IQ players, and our youth national coaches appear clueless at putting together solid teams. We're great  at identifying 1v1 dribblers and players who have nice close control...trying to make a team out of them works great for padding our stats in CONCACAF, but not so much anymore when facing real teams.

It can't be BFS when the teams we put out these days are no longer physically or athletically dominant. Most of our mids at all levels are slow as molasses. 

We're trying to choose technical players, at very young ages, but haven't perfected how to do it.

I'm assuming you are talking about the Mens team here....There is no WAY they have been prioritizing individual skills over BFS...... outside of Pulisic (sometimes) who else can you trust in the last 2/3 iterations of the USMNT to consistently win a 1v1 situation against a top 15 FIFA ranked national team?

On the women's side I hate to say this, but it is the same thing. The US U20 team this last world cup could run faster and last longer on the field than any of the other teams...but the only way they could dribble 1v1 was by kicking the ball far enough and make up the difference with their speed to complete a successful 1v1 dribble....

And Dribbling is not even the main problem here....just wanted to address your comment....

The STILL predominance of BFS girls on the National Teams is clear. Just watch the games....I watched every single one of those U20 games....we dominated physically every game....but the soccer IQ, individual skills and COLLECTIVE skills to play a possession oriented finesse based game just wasn't there....

I'll take a team of 11 girls with high soccer IQ, avg physical traits and great individual skills than a BFS team with average to good skills and avg soccer IQ anytime....

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by DeltaTauChi on 22/08/18, 05:37 pm

OldSoccerSouthD wrote:

I'll take a team of 11 girls with high soccer IQ, avg physical traits and great individual skills

Sounds like you just described Japan and Brazil, whom the USWNT just beat by an 8-3 aggregate a few weeks back. pale

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Re: US Women's Soccer decline vs rest of the world...

Post by CardinalRule on 22/08/18, 06:10 pm

DeltaTauChi wrote:
Big Ern wrote:
CardinalRule wrote:I agree 100% with the lack of "IQ" comments.  Too many players on the US Women and Men's national Uxx team look lost on the field when their style of play is neutralized.  They simply can't adapt and adjust their style of play, and many of them are simply out classed from a skill perspective.    

I wish that was the USWNT’s only problem, but I don't think it is.  I think the process of identifying the "top" talent is extremely flawed and riddled with shortcuts, hidden agendas and cronyism.  Just take a look at the USWNT rosters (U15 and up) at any point in time.  It's overloaded with players from a couple states and clubs.  Start with Texas. It’s vastly underrepresented with the exception of two clubs; Solar and FCD clubs.  Some states look suspiciously overrepresented from a population perspective (Virginia, Georgia and Colorado combined have 3-4X number of players on the USWNT roster at each age with about 4 million less people than Texas), and some clubs have a statistically improbable track record of churning out talent.  I can only imagine the challenges of identifying talent in a country as dispersed and populated as the US with limited resources (coaches and $).  I am sure viewing footage of the many thousands of teams in the country and identifying top players would be next to impossible.  DA does nothing to address that problem.  It simply injects a more insular selection and filtering process.  Unfortunately, we are leaving many of our best players sitting at home, because they aren’t playing at the right club and/or in the right state.   If we keep picking the biggest, strongest and fastest from the DA farm system, the replication of the USMNT disaster will be complete.

Cardinal --

Dude ...  cheers

One question though ... Did you feel this way about the ECNL as well, before GDA came about?

I'm just curious as to which players currently at Texans/Sting/D'Feeters/LP/Fever/Spirit/etc Cardinal considers to be better than the Solar & FCD girls currently rep'n NTX on the YNT's?

The next 2 or 3 that I think you could make an argument for also play for, you guessed it, Solar and FCD right now.  

DTC, I'm not going to debate if the girls from Solar or FCD are good players, and I can’t say or prove that a couple top players from Americas FC, SRFC, NTFC or Sparta’s U15 teams are better than the top DA players at Solar/FCD. They will never get a chance to play against each other. I would hope you don’t think all the top players in Dallas are playing DA.

Case in point, did you happen to watch any of the recent women’s U20 World Cup matches? I watched portions of a couple matches. The US team didn't make it to the quarterfinals, and they were outclassed in the matches I saw. The game against Japan was a major contrast. Japan consistently ripped through the US defense. They passed through, not over the US defense under heavy pressure with smaller, slower and less athletic players. The Japanese players had better field vision and far superior ball handling skills under pressure. Nearly every time Japan pressured team USA in the second half, we turned the ball over within one pass. I am confident there are better U20 players in the US that didn’t get invited to represent US in France.

How do we identify all the top players at each age? I don’t think it’s a simple answer, but I think fielding a US National team at U15, 16 or 17 is pointless. Let young girls mature and improve without the delusions of US soccer.

Lefty, from what I saw, the old ODP model was superior for filtering top players. It was “sort of” a blind tryout model, and it was open to all players. Most importantly, it doesn’t Dribble players to choose between club teams and high school sports. ODP may be nearly dead, but it wasn’t all bad.

Big E, I'm not saying it was perfect before. It’s been trending in the wrong direction for at least a decade. I just think we took a step back with DA. The difference is intent. ENCL never intended to be a farm system for the USWNT, and the girls playing ECNL were allowed to compete in tournaments with non-ECNL teams, could play high school soccer and guest play in other leagues.

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