Endorsed by USSF

Philospophy For Player Development

Top Three Key Points

1 – The younger ages represent the most influential period for
forming a sound fundamental base and a love for the game.

2 – We will continue to make training fun while at the same
time keeping it consistently challenging and competitive.

3 – Playing to win games becomes increasingly important, as
players age, but It should never be at the expense of playing well.

Supportive Points

It is best to teach players to avoid the temptation of BOOTING the ball long and far in the hopes that one of your fast forwards can win a foot race to create a breakaway.

Kicking the ball aimlessly forward into a sea of opponents with the idea of gaining a territorial advantage is, at best, hopeful soccer.

Playing “Direct” soccer, always playing the ball forward regardless of whether or not it is appropriate to do so in that situation, does not develop players and has consistently been proven ineffective at the higher level of the game.

The “Direct” approach only should be discouraged, because it replaces skillful and creative tactical play that moves ball forward, sideways and backwards, with an unbalanced environment emphasizing aggression and size.

We want to encourage players to be “Direct”, going to goal when the opportunity presents itself, understanding the difference between being constructively direct and piecing plays, as opposed to whacking the ball forward all the time.

Players should play an intelligent, patient, controlled game in which skill, mobility, and precision are emphasized and applied at speed.

Players should make precise passes to a well-timed purposeful run that culminates in a shot on goal.

Our objective is to teach and give our players the freedom to make choices during the run of play, so they are able to fulfill their potential.

We emphasize coach, parent and fans refrain from bellowing at players to “shoot it” or “pass it.” A “wrong” decision by a player is better than a “right” decision by a coach, parent or fans.

After the game is the time to discuss why a player made a specific choice in a specific situation. But during the game it must be left for the players to think for themselves.

–  RAGE FC Coaching Staff


The curriculum for developing player skills must be appropriate for each age level, player and team.

The success of the U.S. National Teams program is largely dependent on the quality of the programs that feeds into it. True player development occurs when each player’s daily training and playing environment is of the highest quality. If this environment is consistent, with clear vision and structure of what lies ahead for each player, then development for player is maximized.

In place is a curriculum with guidelines for the U-12 through U-19 age groups for the club, state and regional team levels.

The intended purpose is to:

• Provide coaches with a framework with which to folow an
organized curriculum
• Provide for consistency, with guidance through all levels of play
• Improve “vertical integration” for player development
• Educate new coaches as to the standard of play and expectations
for each age.
• Prepare player for the quality of play at the national level

It is important to note that each player and each team need is different, thus allowing coaches the opportunity to assess and address each case by case.

Individual  and team strengths can be stabilized while deficiencies can be improved.

It is imperative that each coach take the time to observe and study the level for which the team is preparing to compete.

Every club coach should be attuned to the State Level  & National Team
State coaches should be attuned to Regional Team play
Regional coaches should be attuned with the age-group of National Team

This way, a more accurate assessment of player expectations is possible.
The training curriculum and club philosophy will help with the ultimate goal of each coach to prepare more sophisticated players and teams that can compete at the next level.

– RAGE FC Coaching Staff