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Underage soccer clubs that welcome all abilities

  • 16-06-2021 10:12am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭ Cuttlefish


    OK so looking for some advice and guidance in relation to my nephew

    He is going into secondary school next Sept and he loves soccer, now he recently joined a well known soccer club in the city and has been going to training and went to his first match out in Tramore last week but was never used during the game (along with a few other boys from what I understand) - he was visibly upset as you can understand

    Now gonna say up front he is not a great footballer might even say below average nonetheless he loves soccer and would like him to be encouraged and included!

    Firstly is there a common ethos that clubs at this level adopt with regards to "sport for all" and including all kids who attend training and want to play REGARDLESS of their level of ability or (probably answering the question myself here) is it - win at all cost and do so by playing your best players???

    I was hoping that maybe the club may have formed a "B" team for boys of lesser ability so they could enjoy the beautiful game

    Does anyone know of other clubs in the city that adopt a policy that all kids are involved and encouraged??
    Would really love him to feel involved with a club and not feel left out

    He is training again this evening but I dont see him getting much involvement bar basic training

    I know some if not a lot of kids are better than him but as they say some of us open our presents later in life!!

    What suggestions does anyone have

    Thanks


«13

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,737 ✭✭✭ dzilla


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    OK so looking for some advice and guidance in relation to my nephew

    He is going into secondary school next Sept and he loves soccer, now he recently joined a well known soccer club in the city and has been going to training and went to his first match out in Tramore last week but was never used during the game (along with a few other boys from what I understand) - he was visibly upset as you can understand

    Now gonna say up front he is not a great footballer might even say below average nonetheless he loves soccer and would like him to be encouraged and included!

    Firstly is there a common ethos that clubs at this level adopt with regards to "sport for all" and including all kids who attend training and want to play REGARDLESS of their level of ability or (probably answering the question myself here) is it - win at all cost and do so by playing your best players???

    I was hoping that maybe the club may have formed a "B" team for boys of lesser ability so they could enjoy the beautiful game

    Does anyone know of other clubs in the city that adopt a policy that all kids are involved and encouraged??
    Would really love him to feel involved with a club and not feel left out

    He is training again this evening but I dont see him getting much involvement bar basic training

    I know some if not a lot of kids are better than him but as they say some of us open our presents later in life!!

    What suggestions does anyone have

    Thanks

    Really disappointed to hear this, i kind of thought this type of nonsense at underage was gone, hope he gets sorted.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,018 ✭✭✭ hardybuck


    He's at the stage now where things are going to start getting a bit more ruthless unfortunately. While coaches should be giving lads a game whenever the opportunity arises, it won't always be possible to do so.

    The bigger clubs in town should field more than one team in U12s and U13s, however their 'A' teams go out with an ethos of winning rather than giving everyone of all abilities a game.

    Pretty sure that the likes of Bohs and Villa will have B or C teams at that age level. The alternative would be to approach one of the smaller clubs who play in a lower division and would appreciate an extra player.

    If I was you I'd sound a couple of the clubs out - there's loads of teams to choose from.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,642 ✭✭✭ gscully


    Villa FC have a great setup for kids and run summer camps too.

    I coach U12 there and we have 3 U12 teams at the moment and the ethos is that all boys get game time, even if it does cost us a result. It's more important that players learn the game than coaches get a win under their belt.

    As a coach, I could never have a child on the sideline not getting any time in the game. That's just horrible and goes against what coaches are taught in the FAI Safeguarding course. A child's safety isn't just about protecting them from the unwanted attention of others. It's also about protecting their self-esteem.

    If I was you, I'd be sending a message to that club's schoolboy liaison officer.

    Your boy would be more than welcome at Villa, Bohs and Crystal where each club has 3 or 4 teams at each underage bracket.


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,018 ✭✭✭ hardybuck


    gscully wrote: »
    Villa FC have a great setup for kids and run summer camps too.

    I coach U12 there and we have 3 U12 teams at the moment and the ethos is that all boys get game time, even if it does cost us a result. It's more important that players learn the game than coaches get a win under their belt.

    As a coach, I could never have a child on the sideline not getting any time in the game. That's just horrible and goes against what coaches are taught in the FAI Safeguarding course. A child's safety isn't just about protecting them from the unwanted attention of others. It's also about protecting their self-esteem.

    If I was you, I'd be sending a message to that club's schoolboy liaison officer.

    Your boy would be more than welcome at Villa, Bohs and Crystal where each club has 3 or 4 teams at each underage bracket.

    In fairness things do seem to have progressed significantly over the last ten years ago, both in terms of coach education and in terms of general outlook.

    Even subtle changes in parent education can mean questions like "how did you get on, did you have fun?" are starting to be asked on the way home now rather than the old line of "Well, did you win", which can have a meaningful impact.

    I can remember, in the not too distant past, some boys were getting 'released' at U12/13 level from one of the big clubs in town because they weren't going to be getting enough game time, when they'd be hoovering lads up from clubs all over the region at the same time. I think/hope those days are over though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 80 ✭✭ Milanative


    I never went along with this whole let everyone have a game craic you could easily be hindering another child that could make it at a career level by taking minutes away from them just to be inclusive, the fact is the majority of us aren't good enough and we compensate by playing Sunday league, 5 a side etc and still love the game


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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,885 ✭✭✭ Smee_Again


    Can't really expect an 11 or 12 year old to play Sunday league and if they don't get game time now they'll have no interest in playing Sunday league when they're old enough.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,547 ✭✭✭ DeanAustin


    Milanative wrote: »
    I never went along with this whole let everyone have a game craic you could easily be hindering another child that could make it at a career level by taking minutes away from them just to be inclusive, the fact is the majority of us aren't good enough and we compensate by playing Sunday league, 5 a side etc and still love the game

    I'd agree to an extent particularly as kids get a bit older. We've gone way too far to the other extreme here. Kids will naturally be competitive and, particularly when they approaching teenage years, they'll focus on winning and that shouldn't be completely discouraged in my view.

    However, if you're gonna ask kids to travel to games, you have to give them game time. The answer here should be that you stream the group so that you have multiple teams with players at a similar level and everyone plays.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,642 ✭✭✭ gscully


    hardybuck wrote: »
    In fairness things do seem to have progressed significantly over the last ten years ago, both in terms of coach education and in terms of general outlook.

    Even subtle changes in parent education can mean questions like "how did you get on, did you have fun?" are starting to be asked on the way home now rather than the old line of "Well, did you win", which can have a meaningful impact.

    I can remember, in the not too distant past, some boys were getting 'released' at U12/13 level from one of the big clubs in town because they weren't going to be getting enough game time, when they'd be hoovering lads up from clubs all over the region at the same time. I think/hope those days are over though.

    I also remember world-beaters playing at that age and as they grew, others grew faster and better. It's all about child welfare and fun and as you say, most clubs, coaches and parents realise that. Of course it's more fun when you're winning, but teams win and lose together and socialise together and that's the most important thing.


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,523 ✭✭✭✭ salmocab


    Milanative wrote: »
    I never went along with this whole let everyone have a game craic you could easily be hindering another child that could make it at a career level by taking minutes away from them just to be inclusive, the fact is the majority of us aren't good enough and we compensate by playing Sunday league, 5 a side etc and still love the game

    The kids can’t play Sunday league or 5 aside as they are kids and any sport or club that isn’t doing it’s best by children needs to take a good look at itself.


  • Registered Users Posts: 80 ✭✭ Milanative


    is there really no Sunday leagues for kids?


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  • Registered Users Posts: 480 ✭✭ Iscreamkone


    I'm guessing this lad is u13 now. The new u14 season starts in September.
    This is old to be joining up and expecting to get game time with any A teams.
    However, clubs will have weaker teams for beginner/weaker players. Quite possible to progress up the teams with training and time.
    An adult needs to have a chat with a club rep and find a suitable team for this lad.
    If the club doesn't have anything suitable then another club will.

    It was unfortunate that he didn't get any game time. There may be a legitimate reason such as the season is now well underway and they are a serious competitive team, and this lad's ability is still unclear.

    There is definitely teams that will be delighted to have him.

    I coach u7/u8 football and GAA.
    The main focus of our coaching is to introduce basic skills in a fun way - but my personal goal is that when a young lad is asked if he wants to come back next week - he replies "YES".
    Job done then, in my opinion.


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,589 ✭✭✭ lassykk


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    OK so looking for some advice and guidance in relation to my nephew

    He is going into secondary school next Sept and he loves soccer, now he recently joined a well known soccer club in the city and has been going to training and went to his first match out in Tramore last week but was never used during the game (along with a few other boys from what I understand) - he was visibly upset as you can understand

    Now gonna say up front he is not a great footballer might even say below average nonetheless he loves soccer and would like him to be encouraged and included!

    Firstly is there a common ethos that clubs at this level adopt with regards to "sport for all" and including all kids who attend training and want to play REGARDLESS of their level of ability or (probably answering the question myself here) is it - win at all cost and do so by playing your best players???

    I was hoping that maybe the club may have formed a "B" team for boys of lesser ability so they could enjoy the beautiful game

    Does anyone know of other clubs in the city that adopt a policy that all kids are involved and encouraged??
    Would really love him to feel involved with a club and not feel left out

    He is training again this evening but I dont see him getting much involvement bar basic training

    I know some if not a lot of kids are better than him but as they say some of us open our presents later in life!!

    What suggestions does anyone have

    Thanks

    Sorry to hear this still goes on :(

    Twenty five years on it still wrangles with me how Ferrybank behaved in the late 90s. At an under 11 stage going around South Kilkenny/Waterford/Carrick to take on the best players to drive "success" within the club to the detriment to the local lads who no longer could get a game.

    Football at that age should be fun and not about destroying the confidence of lads who turn up week in week out for training and matches and never get a look in. I'm not even talking about poor players but not as good as these "superstars" brought in from the locality. Just to note yes I was one of these players but I wasn't alone in this on the teams.

    I stopped playing junior league at 14 because of this and my daughter is about to start playing at a different club in the near future and I truly hope it isn't the same as it was back in the 90s whereby a group of middle aged men were trying to fuel their egos by putting in a mentality of winning at all costs rather than the duty of care they owed to kids.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,013 ✭✭✭ Quigs Snr


    gscully wrote: »
    Villa FC have a great setup for kids and run summer camps too.

    I coach U12 there and we have 3 U12 teams at the moment and the ethos is that all boys get game time, even if it does cost us a result. It's more important that players learn the game than coaches get a win under their belt.

    As a coach, I could never have a child on the sideline not getting any time in the game. That's just horrible and goes against what coaches are taught in the FAI Safeguarding course. A child's safety isn't just about protecting them from the unwanted attention of others. It's also about protecting their self-esteem.

    If I was you, I'd be sending a message to that club's schoolboy liaison officer.

    Your boy would be more than welcome at Villa, Bohs and Crystal where each club has 3 or 4 teams at each underage bracket.

    Its changed since I played there in the late 80s. Although to be fair, I was the worst player in the county if not the entire country. That being said I did get to make some appearances as an impact sub. I.e. come on with 5 mins to go when we were 5 goals down when I could no longer have a negative impact on the game.

    I am nonetheless sending my kids down there for the summer camp and hoping that they get into it earlier than I did and hopefully enjoy it even more than I did (and all things considered, lack of talent aside I did love it).


  • Posts: 0 ✭✭✭ Dimitri Attractive Jugular


    gscully wrote: »
    Villa FC have a great setup for kids and run summer camps too.

    I coach U12 there and we have 3 U12 teams at the moment and the ethos is that all boys get game time, even if it does cost us a result. It's more important that players learn the game than coaches get a win under their belt.

    As a coach, I could never have a child on the sideline not getting any time in the game. That's just horrible and goes against what coaches are taught in the FAI Safeguarding course. A child's safety isn't just about protecting them from the unwanted attention of others. It's also about protecting their self-esteem.

    If I was you, I'd be sending a message to that club's schoolboy liaison officer.

    Your boy would be more than welcome at Villa, Bohs and Crystal where each club has 3 or 4 teams at each underage bracket.


    Frankie was my coach as a kid and he treated every match like it was the champions League final 😂

    It's good that Villa has changed in recent years. I was a sub for the U13s C team as a kid... I sucked.


  • Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭ Cuttlefish


    DeanAustin wrote: »
    I'd agree to an extent particularly as kids get a bit older. We've gone way too far to the other extreme here. Kids will naturally be competitive and, particularly when they approaching teenage years, they'll focus on winning and that shouldn't be completely discouraged in my view.

    However, if you're gonna ask kids to travel to games, you have to give them game time. The answer here should be that you stream the group so that you have multiple teams with players at a similar level and everyone plays.

    My thoughts exactly - my nephew went to Tramore for a game last Wednesday and just stood on the sideline for the whole duration this was after rushing from his swimming classes!!
    Yes agree it is in their nature to be competitive and should be encouraged however not all kids are so skilful nonetheless ALL kids should be encourage.

    If my nephew is playing for a team suited to his level them I think it would be great


  • Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭ Cuttlefish


    I'm guessing this lad is u13 now. The new u14 season starts in September.
    This is old to be joining up and expecting to get game time with any A teams.
    However, clubs will have weaker teams for beginner/weaker players. Quite possible to progress up the teams with training and time.
    An adult needs to have a chat with a club rep and find a suitable team for this lad.
    If the club doesn't have anything suitable then another club will.

    It was unfortunate that he didn't get any game time. There may be a legitimate reason such as the season is now well underway and they are a serious competitive team, and this lad's ability is still unclear.

    There is definitely teams that will be delighted to have him.

    I coach u7/u8 football and GAA.
    The main focus of our coaching is to introduce basic skills in a fun way - but my personal goal is that when a young lad is asked if he wants to come back next week - he replies "YES".
    Job done then, in my opinion.


    Exactly - did you have fun? Yes Will you come back next week? Yes

    resounding endorsement


  • Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭ Cuttlefish


    I'm guessing this lad is u13 now. The new u14 season starts in September.
    This is old to be joining up and expecting to get game time with any A teams.
    However, clubs will have weaker teams for beginner/weaker players. Quite possible to progress up the teams with training and time.
    An adult needs to have a chat with a club rep and find a suitable team for this lad.
    If the club doesn't have anything suitable then another club will.

    It was unfortunate that he didn't get any game time. There may be a legitimate reason such as the season is now well underway and they are a serious competitive team, and this lad's ability is still unclear.

    There is definitely teams that will be delighted to have him.

    I coach u7/u8 football and GAA.
    The main focus of our coaching is to introduce basic skills in a fun way - but my personal goal is that when a young lad is asked if he wants to come back next week - he replies "YES".
    Job done then, in my opinion.


    Just to reiterate my nephew is a very weak player and I dont expect him to be in the "A" team or to ever get into the "A" team

    If the club has "B", "C" and even "D" teams that he can participate in then great, he will never develop into a seriously good player NONETHELESS he loves playing football and being part of the team and would like that to be nurtured and encouraged. I dont want him to walk away from it because of what happened


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,569 ✭✭✭ mugsymugsy


    Hope the lad can get a game somewhere and keep up his enthusiasm.

    Teams should be looking at this type of thing - I know it's GAA but I think the emphasis should be to get as many people involved in sport

    https://www.balls.ie/gaa/nemo-rangers-underage-philosophy-422455


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,547 ✭✭✭ DeanAustin


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    My thoughts exactly - my nephew went to Tramore for a game last Wednesday and just stood on the sideline for the whole duration this was after rushing from his swimming classes!!
    Yes agree it is in their nature to be competitive and should be encouraged however not all kids are so skilful nonetheless ALL kids should be encourage.

    If my nephew is playing for a team suited to his level them I think it would be great

    Personally, I think that's disgraceful if he's made the effort to turn up. Some underage coaches think they're the next Mourinho. I do a bit of coaching at under 10 level and for the matches I spend a lot of time trying to manage subs and rotating people into goal so everyone gets equal time. A couple of times that's been counterproductive if you have a lot of subs but I think it's wrong if the kids aren't getting proper game time. Particularly with their parents on the line - it's kinda humiliating.

    Played a friendly game last week against a team whose coach brought a tactics board to instruct his players. They were great but I thought that was a bit much for 8 and 9 year olds personally.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,623 ✭✭✭ Bards


    take a look at Park Rangers - they are an all-inclusive club regardless of ability or disability


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,635 ✭✭✭ ec18


    if he's not good enough he shouldn't play......how that's managed on a club level is open to question whether they should be a, b, c teams. But the idea that he should play just because he showed up isn't great.

    It's all well and good saying everyone has to play win or lose, what happens if he costs the team the game ? how would the rest of the team feel then?

    Unfortunately he's at that age where sport gets a bit more intense in terms of competition and some players trying to make a career of it or to win what they can locally.


  • Registered Users Posts: 674 ✭✭✭ Cuttlefish


    ec18 wrote: »
    if he's not good enough he shouldn't play......how that's managed on a club level is open to question whether they should be a, b, c teams. But the idea that he should play just because he showed up isn't great.

    It's all well and good saying everyone has to play win or lose, what happens if he costs the team the game ? how would the rest of the team feel then?

    Unfortunately he's at that age where sport gets a bit more intense in terms of competition and some players trying to make a career of it or to win what they can locally.

    Hi thanks for the reply - I didn’t once say just cos he turns up that he expects to get a game !

    Another point - who is good enough and who determines that ??

    The jist of my thread was to determine if clubs have adopted a win at all cost ethos or inclusivity

    Yes if they have weaker teams then if he good enough for those teams he could fit in there

    He is 13 not 18 or 23 and your idea of making a career well if they good enough they will already be across the water before they turn 10


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,018 ✭✭✭ hardybuck


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    Hi thanks for the reply - I didn’t once say just cos he turns up that he expects to get a game !

    Another point - who is good enough and who determines that ??

    The jist of my thread was to determine if clubs have adopted a win at all cost ethos or inclusivity

    Yes if they have weaker teams then if he good enough for those teams he could fit in there

    He is 13 not 18 or 23 and your idea of making a career well if they good enough they will already be across the water before they turn 10

    You'd be surprised how the young lads will be realistic enough about their own abilities even at this stage. Often they're more aware of that than their parents - many of whom are totally unrealistic.

    I think the previous poster was making the point that regardless of the club's ethos, he could be under pressure from the other boys if he's a weak link and out of his depth. Doesn't matter if you're playing U13B or over 35s astro league, nobody wants to be that guy. He will enjoy that even less than standing on the sideline.

    The key here now at the moment is to find the right level and the right environment for him.


  • Registered Users Posts: 558 ✭✭✭ bradolf pittler


    ec18 wrote: »
    if he's not good enough he shouldn't play......how that's managed on a club level is open to question whether they should be a, b, c teams. But the idea that he should play just because he showed up isn't great.

    It's all well and good saying everyone has to play win or lose, what happens if he costs the team the game ? how would the rest of the team feel then?

    Unfortunately he's at that age where sport gets a bit more intense in terms of competition and some players trying to make a career of it or to win what they can locally.

    Maybe i'm wrong here but isn't it the job of the coach to train and try to improve the whole squad of kids on the team regardless of results?
    I'm involved in a totally different sport but having coached and attended some seminars on coaching at underage levels the role of a coach should be to try and continuosly improve the standard of the team or players he/she is in charge of.
    It saddens me to hear of young kids dropping out of the sport they love through poor or non-existant coaching.
    All it would take is a 10 min 1 on 1 from his current coach to build up this kids confidence and make him feel wanted in the team.
    I hope things get better for him and all the other kids in similar situations


  • Registered Users Posts: 10,523 ✭✭✭✭ salmocab


    Maybe i'm wrong here but isn't it the job of the coach to train and try to improve the whole squad of kids on the team regardless of results?
    I'm involved in a totally different sport but having coached and attended some seminars on coaching at underage levels the role of a coach should be to try and continuosly improve the standard of the team or players he/she is in charge of.
    It saddens me to hear of young kids dropping out of the sport they love through poor or non-existant coaching.
    All it would take is a 10 min 1 on 1 from his current coach to build up this kids confidence and make him feel wanted in the team.
    I hope things get better for him and all the other kids in similar situations

    But if he coaches the not so good kids and his team loses he won’t be able to tell the lads in work on Monday about another great victory that came about by his great coaching.


  • Registered Users Posts: 477 ✭✭ Oscar Madison


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    Just to reiterate my nephew is a very weak player and I dont expect him to be in the "A" team or to ever get into the "A" team

    If the club has "B", "C" and even "D" teams that he can participate in then great, he will never develop into a seriously good player NONETHELESS he loves playing football and being part of the team and would like that to be nurtured and encouraged. I dont want him to walk away from it because of what happened

    Get his parents to get him involved in another sport!

    Sport is what it is and unfortunately people won't waste their time with weak players!


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,522 ✭✭✭ Motivator


    ec18 wrote: »
    if he's not good enough he shouldn't play......how that's managed on a club level is open to question whether they should be a, b, c teams. But the idea that he should play just because he showed up isn't great.

    It's all well and good saying everyone has to play win or lose, what happens if he costs the team the game ? how would the rest of the team feel then?

    Unfortunately he's at that age where sport gets a bit more intense in terms of competition and some players trying to make a career of it or to win what they can locally.

    This is the thing, throwing a young lad of that age into a team of players and against opposition players that are better than him will do more harm to his self esteem than not getting on at all. At his age, the club are dealing with a core group of lads that have probably been playing for the last couple of years so the coaches know the better players and know the weaker ones. Either the kid in question is brand new to the club and brand new to the sport because the club should have him on a weaker team as some suggested. I know very few if any schoolboy teams in Waterford with only an A team.

    He’s about to go into secondary school so he’s not too young to know how sport works. All age groups up to U11 were about having fun and inclusion etc but if you don’t start taking things a bit more serious from U11 then what happens is your club gets left behind because other clubs are taking things more serious. The knock on effect is a club that has spent 3 or 4 years developing a young lad with decent ability will lose the player to another club because things are done better. At that age, you just want to win and I know at that age if our manager was costing us games because he had to give everyone a run then I’d have been on my way out to a different team.

    I’m not trying to be smart but schoolboy soccer is nowhere near as cutthroat as juvenile hurling or football. Clubs are manic about winning nowadays and they’ll play their best players at all times.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,290 ✭✭✭✭ StringerBell


    My son and daughter are both at Villa, and I would recommend them to anyone who asked. Not sure about matches yet as with Covid they haven't really been a factor as they are both new to the club but they both really enjoy the training

    "People say ‘go with the flow’ but do you know what goes with the flow? Dead fish."



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,635 ✭✭✭ ec18


    Cuttlefish wrote: »
    Hi thanks for the reply - I didn’t once say just cos he turns up that he expects to get a game !

    Another point - who is good enough and who determines that ??

    The jist of my thread was to determine if clubs have adopted a win at all cost ethos or inclusivity

    Yes if they have weaker teams then if he good enough for those teams he could fit in there

    He is 13 not 18 or 23 and your idea of making a career well if they good enough they will already be across the water before they turn 10

    You kinda did though, this thread is about him showing up and not being getting some game time.

    Clearly the coach determines who the best players are. They are the ones that are at training and picking the team. You've said yourself he's not the best player.

    That's fair about going across the water already. It doesn't mean that the rest of the team don't want to win games or leagues etc. Just because he didn't get to play doesn't mean the club has a win at all costs mentality? Maybe they have a the best trainers get played?

    Look if he's not the best football player he's in for weeks like this for a while until he finds a team/league level that he's competitive at. Anything else is just putting off the inevitable.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 813 ✭✭✭ Raytown Rocks


    How about yourself or one of his parents contact the club
    See if they have a 2nd team
    If the don't, maybe look to start one up at the club yourselves
    See if there are any other parents willing to help

    Remember the coaches are volunteers
    They put an awful lot of effort into training teams.
    It can be very difficult to please everyone.

    Your nephew may indeed prosper playing at a lower level, against lads of similar skill.
    See what you can do to help.


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