BRANDON, Fla. – The Cleveland Internationals made the U12 boys final and were determined the make the most of it. After surviving a penalty shootout to advance to the final a day earlier, the Internationals looked make it five wins from five matches. Cleveland did just that, winning 2-0 against the New Jersey Rangers to claim the title.
Cleveland set the tone of the match early when a Will Jackson goal put the Internationals up 1-0.
New Jersey responded with its own pressure, but the two sides mainly cancelled each other out with the ball being clogged in the midfield.
Halftime came with the score still at 1-0 and in the second half the sides continued to push for a way through. Each side attempted to find a way through the other’s defense, but the backlines were holding strong.
At times the two sides struggled to find the passing game which brought them to the final, and resorted to long balls.
As the second half wore on the Internationals found the match again and started to hold on to the ball better.
In the 56th minute the Internationals' patience paid off when a failed Rangers clearance fell to Joey Schmidt who took it in on goal, rounded the goalkeeper and finished it to ice the match and the championship for Cleveland.
“If you come to play and execute the game plan, you’re going to win,” Cleveland Head Coach Louie Nanchoff said. “These kids did perfect, they shut them out. They were a very strong team. We have a very young team, but we played very good soccer.”
Clevelandmo wrote:Also, the U17s tied France, beat Turkey, and beat Brazil to win the friendly competition so that's pretty encouraging.
At the same time the winter showcase was being held in Florida they had the Super Y National Finals in Tampa. The team my son plays for, which also is a US developmental academy, won the U12 national super Y title. He was not on the team though as he is fairly new and it's an age group older but several of the kids on his current team played. It was pretty cool. And what makes it even better is that a guy from US soccer talked to them afterward and complimented them for not only their style of play but also for how well they conducted themselves both on and off the field. Very nice to hear they are watching that stuff and giving feedback even at such a young age.
DCHeather wrote:Clevelandmo wrote:Yeah, that's nice to hear them give compliments like that to young, impressionable players. Probably made them more aware that others notice their conduct at all times and positive reinforcement goes a long way.
Clevelandmo wrote:DCHeather wrote:Clevelandmo wrote:Yeah, that's nice to hear them give compliments like that to young, impressionable players. Probably made them more aware that others notice their conduct at all times and positive reinforcement goes a long way.
Yeah, as much as I want to win, it's more important to me that the team conducts itself with class. The day the US has players acting like Ibrahimovic or Ronaldo, is the day I wont care much anymore. However, I've always wondered how much being an ass helps those guys as players. Confidence is a key element in game performance. Similarly I've wonderd if the fact that I've raised my boys to be nice and considerate has hurt them in sports because I think they rarely perform to their potential. What do people think, if you want to be an athlete are you better off being a jerk? Maybe I should start a separate thread on that topic.
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