• The College Process: Be Prepared, Proactive and Persistent
    No two children are alike and their dreams are as unique as their goals. As high school students across the nation center another grade, many will begin the exciting -- and at times overwhelming -- process of preparing for college.
  • How youth soccer has changed in the past four decades
    Having officiated my 10,000th game on August 8 gave me a chance to reflect on the many changes that have occurred on the American youth soccer landscape since when I took up the whistle in 1978 and was a youth player in the 1970's. Here are some of them:
  • A new era for girls soccer: Development Academy kicks off in competition with ECNL.
    The U.S. Soccer Girls Development Academy -- with 69 clubs, 276 teams and more than 6,000 players -- kicks off this weekend, a decade after U.S. Soccer launched the Boys Development Academy.
  • U.S. U-17 boys suffer rare loss, beaten 4-0 by Japan
    A 4-0 loss to Japan at 2017 Vaclav Jezek Tournament in the Czech Republic marked the U.S. U-17 boys national team's worst loss since falling, 4-0, to Mexico in a friendly in Panama in February of 2013.
  • Rondo: A simple practice game with multiple benefits
    Definition of "rondo": A game where one group of players has the ball while in numerical superiority (3v1, 5v2, 5v5+2 etc ...) over another group of players. The basic objective of the group in numerical superiority is to keep possession of the ball while the objective of the group in numerical inferiority is to win the ball back.
  • Don't waste time at practice, let them play!
    When former U.S. World Cup captain and Hall of Famer Claudio Reyna was U.S. Soccer Youth Technical Director, he made what I thought was a crucial point about youth coaching: Don't waste time.
  • Californian helps Mexico beat USA in Concacaf U-15 Championship final
    Los Angeles Galaxy academy star Efrain Alvarez, who earlier this month signed a USL contract with Galaxy II, set up Mexico's first goal in a 2-0 win over the USA in the Concacaf U-15 Championship final.
  • 11 Tips for Coaching the Little Ones
    "I got recruited to coach my kid's soccer team. Any advice?"
  • Rising Stars: Busio, Reyna, Gaines and Co., shoot U.S. U-15 boys into Concacaf final
    The USA outscored its first four foes 15-2 to reach the final of the Concacaf U-15 Championship in Bradenton, Florida. On Saturday, Coach Dave Van Den Bergh's team faces Mexico, a 3-0 semifinal winner over Canada.
  • Mission Accomplished: The 10,000th game
    Some Soccer Americans might recall the name of Dani Braga, the starting goalkeeper when St. John's University won the 1996 NCAA men's soccer national championship. The Red Storm's 4-1 victory over Florida International University had the unusual fact that in the FIU goal was Dani's Syosset High School teammate, Sal Fontana. Both Dani (pronounced like "Donnie") and Sal played in goal for different teams for the Syosset Soccer Club in the Long Island Junior Soccer League when they were growing up.
  • Think food first: Refueling after training or games
    Here's another of those subjects that seems to make some people emotional -- why is it important for young athletes to refuel after exercise, when should this happen, and what drink/food is best?
  • Scouting network grows for U.S. Soccer Development Academy
    The Boys U.S. Soccer Development Academy, which recently completed its 10th season, ended its inaugural season of 2007-08 with 25 scouts. It enters its 11th year with a network of 125 scouts, who report 12 regional Technical Advisors, the number of which has also increased.
  • No punting allowed -- a welcome change to American youth soccer
    I imagine all coaches must do this: Look back on their early years and consider what we would have done differently. Now I coach older kids, but 12 years ago I was coaching the youngest, and back then we used goalkeepers even for the 6-year-olds. And in the years that followed, from U-8s to U-10s and so on ... perhaps the biggest mistake I made was allowing my goalkeepers to punt the ball.
  • A coach's life: Daouda Kante of Kansas Rush and how 'respecting kids goes a long way'
    Upon moving to New York from Mali, Daouda Kante starred for New Jersey high school power St. Benedict's Prep. After college ball at Mercer and FIU, Kante went pro, including three seasons (2002-04) for MLS's New England Revolution. He started in the Revs' runner-up finish to the Los Angeles Galaxy on MLS Cup 2002. Now Technical Director of Kansas Rush SC, he is also a national instructor for United Soccer Coaches (formerly as known the NSCAA).
  • USL provides big boost to young pro prospects
    Thirteen years ago, Michael Orozco was one of the most talented young players in Southern California. The Los Angeles Galaxy invited the 18-year-old to training. Though Orozco impressed, he wasn't ready for first team play on a squad full of seasoned veterans that in following year became 2005 MLS champs.