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Fagundez's Perfect Playmate; Magee's Early Test with Pros (When They Were Children)

With MLS's 19th season kicking off this weekend, the Youth Soccer Insider's "When They Were Children" series is looking back at the formative years of some of the league's brightest stars, starting with a teen sensation and last year's league MVP.
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Making Critical Feedback Positive and Motivating (with Chris Hayden)

As his practice wound down and the FC Dallas U-13 boys sat in a circle stretching under the afternoon Texas sun, Chris Hayden took a minute to help his players put what they'd worked on that day in context.
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Make Sure the Goals are Anchored

I keep a short record of every game that I ever officiated so I know that Mitchel Athletic Complex in Uniondale, Long Island, is the field complex where I have refereed the most. It was the home to the Long Island Rough Riders and now hosts the New York Cosmos' training field.
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The Power of Planning a Practice (Tony Lepore)

On the day I observed Tony Lepore, the Director of Scouting for the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, he had a lot to accomplish at the U.S. Soccer Training Center session. He had 36 players in from across the Northeast for a two-hour training. In that time his goal was to run a practice that developed the skills at the core ...
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Put refs and coaches in the same room

Last month I co-hosted a workshop at U.S. Youth Soccer's annual gathering in Philadelphia with longtime referee and National Instructor Barry Towbin titled: "Coaches and Referees Improving Relations for the Good of the Game."
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Joe Cannon: 'With talent and the belief, you can go far'

Listening to my twin brother tell me about the local soccer club scene in the San Francisco Bay Area, I realized this was a problem not restricted to his family. With AYSO, Cal North, NorCal, ECNL and the U.S. Soccer Developmental Academy, parents are overwhelmed with where to place or what to do with their aspiring little Messis, Ronaldos or ...
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Crack down on Persistent Infringement

There are seven reasons for cautioning a player. I don't believe that I cautioned anybody for one of the reasons -- persistent infringement -- during my first three years of refereeing.
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April Heinrichs: Coaching Boys vs. Girls -- More Similar than Different

Here's what I know after coaching girls and women for 25 years, and coaching our nation's best female players for the last 15 years:
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Tales from the Tryouts

The kids wear bibs with numbers and the coaches walk around with clipboards jotting notes.
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'Don't get mad at kids for struggling' (Q&A with Doug Lemov, Part 3)

Coaching clinics, practice vs. game coaching, communicating with a struggling player, and overcoaching are the topics in Part 3 of our interview with Doug Lemov, the author of highly acclaimed school teaching books "Teach Like a Champion" and "Practice Perfect." Lemov has been working with the U.S. Soccer Federation to improve coaching through better teaching.
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'Say it carefully, quickly, clearly' (Q&A with Doug Lemov, Part 2)

Doug Lemov, the author of "Teach Like a Champion," one of the best-selling teaching books in the USA, has been working with the U.S. Soccer Federation to improve coaching through better teaching. In Part 2 of our interview with Lemov we asked him for advice how to get a group of chatty, fidgety youngsters to pay attention for a few ...
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What Teachers can Teach Coaches (Q&A with Doug Lemov, Part 1)

Doug Lemov, the author of "Teach Like a Champion," one of the best-selling teaching books in the USA, as well as "Practice Perfect," also happens to be a soccer aficionado who has been researching soccer coaching techniques.
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Ref Watch: How Electronic Communication Helps

Refereeing has not changed nearly as much as other pursuits since I first took up the whistle in 1978. After all, the rules are very similar to what they were 36 years ago, I still have to run up and down a soccer field and I still have to manage players and coaches. Chances are, what you and I do ...
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Top SuperDraft picks look back (When They Were Children)

The Youth Soccer Insider asked the top picks in the 2014 MLS SuperDraft for memories of their early years -- such as players they admired -- for our latest edition of "When They Were Children."
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'Development Academy boosts U.S. talent' (Q&A: Tony Lepore)

Soccer America checks in with Director of Scouting Tony Lepore on the state of the U.S. Soccer Development Academy, which launched in 2007 and now includes nearly 100 clubs, having added a U-14 division in 2013 to complement its U-16 and U-18 national leagues -- and for insight into how U.S. Soccer has expanded its scouting system to identify talent ...
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