Athletic Development Trumps Elite Selection

Originally published in Los Angeles Sports & Fitness, July/August 2016.

As Abby Wambach retired after her record-setting career with the U.S. Soccer Women’s National Team, she criticized Jurgen Klinsmann for his strategy of recruiting dual-national citizens living and developing outside the United States. Whereas many viewed Wambach’s comments as xenophobic, and somewhat disingenuous as she never appeared to have a problem with her teammate Sydney Leroux who was raised in Canada, the comments struck me as less about xenophobia and more about the long-term development of soccer in the United States.  […]

Coaching and Mistakes

In youth sports, the way that a coach deals with mistakes is one of the great differentiating factors between coaches. Some view mistakes as something to eliminate; others view mistakes as part of the learning process, and an essential step, especially for young players. The coach’s viewpoint informs his coaching style and his or her communication with the players. […]