Today our Jr. Upper School Soccer Team had a match against another team from another school. Although both are junior teams, our team is mostly grade 8s and some grade 9s. The team they were playing had one grade 9 player and the rest were all grade 10 students. Needless to say the bodies of most 13-14 year-olds pale in comparison to those of 15-16 year-olds.
Nevertheless, our boys don’t let size determine their attitude or game. They go to the field and play hard.
While cheering from the sidelines and when we were 1-0 to them, I heard the other coach prep one player with this: “One on one they can’t outrun us, they can’t compete with us”.
I could feel my blood boiling. At first I thought “oh it’s just my lion mama heart and brain wanting to kick the coaches b… because he was implying that my one and only, but most importantly fighter and determined son, could not compete with his big players”. That his team mates, many of which I have seen grow as players, were not enough for these “big boys”. Yes, I admit that my protective side may have turned on. However, after careful thought I realized that I was most upset about this coaches’ train of thought. Are you implying to your players that they could win just because of their size or just because their muscles would make them more powerful? Are you saying to your players that skill and hard work do not matter? That it was a piece of cake? How cocky is that? Instead of motivating them to give as much as they can and reach whatever their personal best is individually and as a team, you, their guide and coach, are telling them to rely on the other team’s apparent weaknesses? How about developing and growing soccer and team skills?
The truth is that facts speak loudly than words and we tied one to one and had to go to a penalty shoot out to decide the game.
Although our boys lost in penalties, we all know that what really mattered was said during the actual game. Size and physical power don’t make winners. Winners are made by fighting, by believing in what you have to bring to the table, by continuously improving, by supporting each other and never ever giving up because Titans Never Stop!