Let those who say, “it’s all about having fun,” deride my remarks as they wish. Usually I would agree. It IS all about having fun. However, it’s not as much fun when you never win. Oh, I could deal with losing most of the games, but three seasons in a row without one win? It’s demoralizing to the kids. It’s demoralizing to the parents too, watching them kick at the grass and pick their shorts out of their cracks as they wander, heads down, back to the sidelines, forced to raise a disheartened cheer to the other team before heading home.
My son is a very good sport about it. I know the coach well. I’ve analyzed the team backward and forward, trying my best to figure out what exactly the problem might be. The only conclusion I can come to is that this particular mix of kids just don’t have the drive to win – and every other team kicks their butts with frenetic ease, blasting the ball through their goal and laughing. “Another one for us! We ROCK. YEAH BABY! Take that, LOSERS!”
This team simply doesn’t work well together. They don’t hold their positions. They don’t pass the ball to each other – or at least not directly to each other. And it isn’t as if the coach doesn’t try to teach them the right things. Another issue is that none of the players is what I would call a “key” player. They’re all equally, well… undriven to win. They aren’t losers, they’re just not winners. I don’t know any other way to describe it. There’s certainly no “eye of the tiger” going on in this group. No one is staying hungry for the kill here – unless it’s the post-game snacks.
So, this year, we’ve finally broken up the team and split them out between the other teams in the league. My son prefers to play defense, and is actually quite good in that position. I look forward to seeing how things end up this year. If we lose all of the games, I’m sure my son will begin to think that he’s the curse that brought down the previous team, so hopefully they won’t lose ALL of them again. I’d hate for him to get disgusted with the sport and give it up. Then he’ll end up a broken man, huffing shoe-shine on the street, drinking cheap booze from a bottle, begging for cash on the side of the road. I just don’t want to see that. I’d like to see a smile on his face at the end of a game for once. “Dad, we WON!”
Wouldn’t that be something?