EATON — Eaton High School boys soccer players held their summer camp for youth in grades 4-8, June 13-16.
The four day camp held daily sessions of two hours long with a large number of campers and instructors in attendance. Many of the varsity boys soccer players helped out at the camp to run drills and exercises for the kids.
“Lots of talent here,” said boys coach Matt Money during camp. “We have about 30 boys here, and they are hungry. A lot of them have been here before — I trained most of them on a team last year and seen a lot of them before that so they are eager to play. We want to teach the game and hope these kids decide to play at the high school level. But there’s so much talent here and we have to cultivate it and teach it the way it is done right.”
Essential skills taught at the camp are dribbling, passing, defending, finishing, but very little tactical work. Each skill is conducted at stations run by the coaches and volunteer high school players from the Eagles’ program.
“We don’t touch up so much on tactics, that’s up to their individual coaches to teach,” Money emphasized. “I think a lot of club coaches in America don’t do a lot of technical training so that’s what this camp is for. I think across the board in the USA, we do not cover the basics enough and just teach shooting and possession. But if they cannot pass, then they have little chance to maintain possession of the ball.”
American soccer has evolved a lot in recent years, but needs to improve much more. Even though American soccer hasn’t been very successful in the global community, American soccer has improved its play little by little. “We have to build the game up from the bottom up,” Money stressed with enthusiasm. “I played 31 years and its been getting better but we still have a long way to go before we can expect championship potential in international and Olympic competition.
“The enthusiasm is great here in Eaton. The parental support has been great, the high school kids and the younger kids are hungry and want to get the tradition rolling again here.”