Thursday, February 10, 2011

Interesting timing indeed

Jeff Kassouf the other day penned U.S. Soccer focuses on player development in the women's game, a good quick read.

In it he describes how US Soccer has a renewed focus on the womens game likely caused from some of the recent stumbles from the U-17 and U-20 teams.

Best line in the article for me was:
When USSF president Sunil Gulati officially appointed the two women to the newly created positions on Jan. 6 he said that the appointments are not reactionary, but have been in the works for some time. If that is the case -- as overly coincidental as the timing may be -- the changes could not come at a more necessary time.
I don't know how these could not be anything but reactionary given the recent progress of the women's game. Yet I concede the possibility exists.

Flip to the comments from Neil Beuthe, communications director for US Soccer on women referees. Is this reactionary, due to some pressure being heaped on US Soccer for not having women referees in men's professional games, or a Title 9 issue rearing its head?

While it would not seem to be the case, my hope is this is a tandem effort from US Soccer and there is concert between the players side and the referee side. One can not exist without the other, despite what both may think.

In my experience this is rarely the case and the two are on separate tracks regarding development, and at times necessarily so. There are a few shining stars however as at the higher levels there is a clear recognition that it is more than a peaceful coexistence that the two need, it is shared cooperation and vision of how THE game is played and managed.

We are all one big, happy, and at times, dysfunctional family. The more we can learn from each other, the better off we are.

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