Director's Blog

Ask the Director, Monthly Q & A

Do you have questions about how the Club operates, Club philosophy or general soccer questions?   Here is your place to ask the questions and the Club Directors will answer them.  

The Club environment and soccer climate in the United States is changing faster than you can imagine.   It would be impossible for you, as players and parents, to stay up with all of these changes.  It is part of the Club’s responsibility to educate all it’s members and the Director’s Blog is exactly the place that this can happen.  So, please, ask your questions by e-mailing directorsblog@seacoastunited.org

We look forward to hearing from you.

Click on the Installment to jump to the answer:

Installment #1 - Why do we play 8v8 at U12?
Installment #2 - Why can’t we receive the NEP and/ or tournament schedules more in advance?
Installment #3 - How is the game that is played in the indoor league in Hampton different from Futsal?

Installment #1

Why do we play 8v8 at U12?  

Since we began playing 8v8 at U11 and especially since we started it at U12, we have been asked this question many times.   It is a valid question with even more valid answers.   We have supplied, on our website, a page dedicated to the question, "Why small sided games?", that addresses this topic directly.   Click here to go that page and read the reasons given to us by the United States Soccer Federation (USSF).

All too often, parents in youth sports want their childs’ games to look like the professional game.     The fact is that it is unfair to place a small, growing child on a large field and expect them to play the game and for it to be fun.   They cannot physically handle the demands of a 120 x 70 yard field.   It is the job of the directors to be sure that our players are developing in the best possible environment.  Another part of our position is to identify the weaknesses of our players and create a curriculum that will make our players better.   Having watched many games from U10 to U20 it is our observation that the deficiencies of our teams, as compared to other teams, both locally and nationally, are attributed to lack of individual skill and creativity.   Our teams compete with the best teams around and are tactically very sound.  However, it is the lack of individual skills that is ultimately holding our teams back from winning the big games.

There is a rush to play 11v11 and a belief that by playing bigger, the player will become a better player.  That has proven to be false, in the long run.  Sure, a team that has been playing 11v11 longer at U13 or 14 might have an advantage, tactically.  The teams that have a larger technical base will catch up and surpass those teams in the long run.   You can teach a player to play the 11v11 game at a later age but you must teach them the skill required to play the game at earlier ages.  So we ask our members to be patient with their player’s development.   They will playing on the big field soon enough.  By placing the emphasis of skill development  at earlier age, we hope that when they do head to the bigger field, that the game is more enjoyable to play and watch.

Installment #2 

Why can’t we receive the NEP and/ or tournament schedules more in advance?

The NEP Schedule has been a work in progress with coordination in different states. In MA, RI and ME many players still play for their towns in separate town leagues and those state associations mandate that Clubs not schedule conflicting games.  New Hampshire is unique in that it does not black out certain days for town soccer teams. We would agree the scheduling has to get better.  In most cases it is a matter of website updating.  We are a part of the NEP because we are able to control the direction the league goes in, on and off the field.  This is something that is and will continue to be addressed so that the rest of the fall and spring are a lot smoother.  

As for tournament scheduling, we do not close off application into our tournaments until 2 weeks prior to an event.   You can imagine that putting together a tournament schedule is not an easy task.  The things that are taken into consideration are issues like coaches coaching multiple teams, town team conflicts, and travel conflicts. There are many more that need to be taken into consideration. We have tried to put these schedules together earlier, in the past, and have only frustrated people by having to make several adjustments.  When we publish the schedule, we anticipate it to be the final schedule.

The understanding with all of our teams when we go to any tournaments (home or away) is that the schedule could change (due to the weather) or your team could advance. Understanding these things, we hope our families plan their weekends accordingly.  

We are thrilled to offer our own home tournaments, which saves our families a lot of time and money.  If we did not have our own fields, where we could host these tournaments, all of our teams would be traveling to various tournaments to fit each individual teams’ needs.  This would, in turn, be a greater time commitment.

We do understand the sacrifices that our families make for soccer.   Some things can be improved (League Scheduling) but other things are inherent with Club soccer.

Installment #3

How is the game that is played in the indoor league in Hampton different from Futsal?

Indoor soccer is played with a regular ball with boards on a field approximately 180’ x 90’ with 5 field players and a GK. Futsal is played with a futsal ball (does not bounce and is smaller) on a court that is approximately 115’ x 60’ (size of basketball court) with 4 field players and a GK.

Check out the links below for more information about the rules of each game.

http://www.usindoor.com/
http://www.futsal.org/index.php/futsal-laws-of-the-game