Winning has its place!
Everyone involved in our program, from our parents, players, and coaches to our program administrators – we all want to win – after all, the objective and fun of most games is to win and this basic principle of any sport/game cannot be ignored. Players and parents must also recognize that there is a distinct difference between recreational and competitive soccer. Arsenal Sports Club is a competitive soccer program, players (and their parents) wishing to join an ASC team must already embrace this, or they must learn to embrace this distinction. Thus, one of our objectives must be to help players understand “what it takes” to compete beyond recreational soccer. Having all of the fundamental skills of soccer won’t allow a player to succeed in a competitive soccer environment if they are not willing to add to those fundamentals a superior set of the associated intrinsic skills that are also at the core of the game (effort, aggressiveness, toughness (mental and physical), tactical awareness, etc. Soccer is a contact sport, that, when played by a complete player exhibits all of these characteristics and more. The desire to win cannot be replaced by a subset of these attributes; it must entail ALL of them. The objective of the game is to have fun – but fun within the context of playing at a very competitive level of soccer, which requires all of the skills of the game, and all of the intrinsic qualities of a soccer player to have fun at that level of play. The ASC development philosophy therefore recognizes winning as a mental and physical characteristic, which we must nurture and support in our players – winning is not valued in the context of team or club records.
From a development perspective, winning must be accomplished through good training, teamwork and intensity. A misdirected focus on winning results in poorly played soccer – a style of play and a tendency by coaches to exploit the raw physical abilities of early bloomers at the expense of their fundamental development needs in the pursuit of club or team statistics.
In short, the ASC player development philosophy includes the development of the complete player – which includes their level of intensity and willingness to truly play a contact sport and be willing to except the physical demands of the game, as well as the development of the fundamental skills required to execute in the game. No parent, administrator, or teacher would expect students to be performing college level academics in elementary school – but rather the student must master the building blocks of the more complex academic concepts before advancing.
WINNING IS A BI-PRODUCT OF DOING THINGS RIGHT EVERYDAY