Author Mike Slatton

Mike Slatton is a 2nd generation American youth soccer coach since 1984, and the son of one of the nation's first female licensed youth soccer coaches (Anita Slatton, 1979). He's also a professional soccer scout, a player since 1977, and the father of three adult and teenage children who all play or have played the game. "My job as a youth soccer coach is to develop confident, detail oriented problem solvers who can react quickly under pressure. It's important that players NOT be afraid of making mistakes, to encourage an appreciation of failure as a learning tool. This relates to life - not just soccer."

Athlete Performance New York Red Bulls worst seats in the stadium
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The spring in New York is wet and when it rains, the fields are quickly washed out. Grass doesn’t grow without a fight, and when the soil is eroded, all that’s left is rock and packed soil. MLS Home Grown Talent…

Playing soccer in this environment is a challenge.

Economics Youth Soccer Team Parent
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This article offers tips on: communication, planning and organization, and promoting of good player and parent conduct. With the correct tools and information, the team manager can become an integral part of the team and allow the coach to do what they are qualified and brought in to do: engage, coach, develop players.

Athlete Performance Dribbling soccer player
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Children are BORN with confidence. The have no fear of anything, until they are given a reason to fear something.

For instance, children aren’t afraid of heights until they fall, or they witness someone else fall, or are convinced by another person that they should be afraid of falling. Children aren’t afraid of strange animals until they are bitten, see someone else get bitten, or are convinced by another person that approaching a strange animal could result in physical harm. With no outside influence, children are CONFIDENT.

Soccer Careers Soccer is creating trained killers
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A well trained athlete has been rehearsing on-field scenarios to the point that almost nothing surprises them. The highest caliber military personnel mentioned above are, too. Many military personnel were athletes growing up. The best athletes are usually the ones who…

Etiquette Field-side Manner
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In reality, most parents are pushing the envelope on BAD field-side manner. Whether it’s snide remarks or downright yelling and screaming at the ref, bad-field-side manner is prevalent at nearly every youth sporting event – not just soccer.

The Big Picture Scouts
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The fact that kids are quitting soccer is NOTHING to be alarmed about. There is no way to remove pressure from sports. Pressure is what sports are all about. In fact, the pressure to win is a VITAL PART of the athletic development process. There seems to be this growing argument that winning games should be completely ignored in order to focus on “player development”, but the pressure to win is what MOTIVATES the desire to improve one’s skills.

Mike Slatton's Blog Getting ready to head the ball
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Most kids who are new to the game are usually assigned to coaches who are equally new to the game. This the REAL problem of our youth system and the actual CAUSE of concussions in young players. That’s because 99% of concussions in youth soccer games u-8 and younger are directly related to CHASING THE BALL.