Viable Solution

“Viable Solution” published in ‘Soccer Journal’ July/August 2017, Vol. 62. No. 4 edition.


US Soccer created Player Development Initiatives in 2015 so that all of their affiliated youth programs operated on the same page.  With US Soccer having 4 youth organizations for too long they heard excuse after excuse on why people weren’t putting the Kids First. Now with August 1, 2017 almost upon us the Player Development Initiatives will be mandated for all US Soccer affiliated programs of which Cal North is.

Cal North is basically the birth place of small sided soccer.  Karl Dewazien has long advocated (since 1980) young players playing in smaller groups. Why? We have all seen what is also known as Bunch ball. A swamp of players chase a small object with adults (hopefully) cheering them on. The ball goes here, there, everywhere.  Aliens watching an adult game of soccer and comparing it to what the children were doing would not be able to make any connection between the two. There were minor similarities, but it wasn’t really the Beautiful game we hear so much about.

When I first met Karl almost 25 years ago he was advocating and changing the world of youth soccer by reducing the number of players, the size of the field and the size of the ball.  You see when I grew up (back when dinosaurs roamed the earth) we played 11 versus 11, full goals and used a regulation ball and all ages did this.  I am sure my parents were happy with the results.  The field was HUGE. I would come home so tired I am sure my parents didn’t hear a peep out of me as I had run a marathon.  All at the tender age of 7. Click here to see …How US Soccer hopes to fix it!

By Craig Winans,  Cal North 2nd Vice Chairman