We have an opportunity to serve the youth soccer players of Western PA by implementation of a curriculum that will empower every club within PA WEST.
Futsal First for ages U6-U12 in which skill development is key, will elevate the level of play on a local, regional, and national level, and will be the model for all of youth soccer in the US. Futsal First is designed to develop a player’s agility, awareness, ball confidence, cognition, creativity, decision making, determination, fitness, foot-skills, recognition, and speed of play. All of which has been proven through futsal, the game of skill.
When US SOCCER began the march forward on the development of the youth player one thing that was put forth was the use of the small sided game, especially for those players under the age of twelve. No longer would players under that age play 11V11 etc. The mandate for the small sided game had been launched. 8V8, 7V7, 6V6, and finally, 5V5 or futsal are all tools available for the development of players within the US!
The rationale: players develop an overall greater picture of the game when augmented by more touches additionally, their greater exposure to more 1V1 opportunities are accessed through the small sided game. It is estimated that in the course of a 7V7 match players are 4 times as likely to touch the ball than in an 11V11 scenario. Through guidelines set forth by FIFA, Futsal is the only sanctioned indoor game (typically, indoor is known for its small sided nature).
Futsal is a fast paced game in which every player must attack and defend. It is a game where everyone is forced to make decisions quickly, pass and receive the ball cleanly, and, move without the ball in order to create space for the attack or in defending the counter attack. It requires ball support defensively and offensively on a consistent basis.
On average each player is likely to touch the ball 30 more times than the player in an 11V11 match. The game can be played indoor or out with quick restarts and kick-ins (rather than throw-ins), and a 4 second limit to get the ball in play once it has been awarded. A maximum roster size of twelve players allows for more players to be involved in the game and for players to develop a greater confidence with the ball while increasing their ability to play in tight situations which ultimately creates the imaginativeness that distinguishes players from the ordinary. Substitutions can occur on the fly with no limit to the number allowed.
With Futsal First, the outdoor clubs in this area will have a greater selection of players who have already developed the skill necessary to help them achieve the recognition and success they are after. It will be the model for the standard across the US.