There are a wide range of soccer clubs available for young athletes who wish to bring their game to the next level.
In choosing the right program for each child, parents should consider the following tips that will help them and their child find the right program to fit their needs.
Find the Club’s Mission Statement
Many soccer clubs try and distinguish themselves from other clubs through their mission statement. As such, looking at the statement should be the first place parents look to determine whether the soccer club is the right fit for them.
Although many of these statements will have similar language as to improving skills and providing top notch coaching, there are many variations of these statements that will provide parents with the subtle intentions of the team.
Look for Coaching Roster
A club’s success goes only as far as the coaches who run the individual teams. As a result, most teams are now posting their coach rosters online with a bio of their experience.
Beware of clubs that do not have this feature on their website as this can be an indication of their inexperienced coaching staff.
How do the Club’s Release Their Information?
Many clubs will only release information regarding their team’s victories in tournaments. This is something that parents should be weary of, especially if they are looking for their child to have a well rounded experience. Some of the best programs make the concerted effort to recognize hard working athletes regardless of the outcome on the soccer field, a positive message that further enforces their mission statement.
Check the Alumni Page
One of the primary indicators of success of a program is the type of players that the club regularly produces. If a specific club has a large number of collegiate players on their alumni list, this is a strong indication that the program has a great ability to develop highly skilled players, a testament to their coaches and administration.
Ask Area Coaches for Contact Information of Athletes Who Played for Club Before
Never ask the club coordinator for references as they will only provide you with athletes who they know had a positive experience. Instead, ask area soccer coaches if they know of any players who have played for the club before and reach out to them. This will provide you with an unbiased opinion as to the quality of the club.
Seek Out Soccer Referees Who Have Refereed Club’s Games
A soccer referee is the go-to source to find out how the teams and coaches conduct themselves during competition. In many cases, certain clubs will gain a reputation among referees for exhibiting unsportsmanlike behavior. This opinion is invaluable in determining whether a parent wants their child to be exposed to a coach and team who have earned such a reputation.
At the Conclusion of the Season Leave a Review on a Public Forum
The only way that parents will be able to ascertain as much information as possible on a club without is for parents to pass along information on the program through a public forum. Using a social media site such as facebook is one such way to get the word out and can be invaluable for the generations to come.