llys
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#1
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I think that someone (probably not the FA because I don't trust them - perhaps Sport England?) should offer Football Grades, analogous to music grades.

These would go from Grade 1 through to Grade 8 (amateur grades) and for semi-professional players a Diploma would be offered as well. The exams for these grades would test individual fitness and technical skills, as well as tactical and analytical understanding in theory and in practice (as a group). The exams could be offered at every school (assessed by external examiners who come in once every half year). Just as in music, football grades would provide motivation and a framework for children to practise intelligently when unsupervised.

One advantage of Grades, compared to the current "system" of coaching and playing (which as far as I can tell is not very systematic at all), is that if there are Grades that build upon each other, then there is a clear focus on development of skill and understanding for each individual child, and not even English coaches could avoid it and have their youth pass.

I'm not proposing this for kids at football academies or for the good of the national team - I don't care about that. I just think 1) sport education currently is ridiculously bad and 2) grades would be a lot of fun for the amateur kids.
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Drewski
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"I'm not playing with you, you're only a 2."

Yeah, great idea, another way for kids to bully and victimise one another.
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shawn_o1
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In mainland Europe, there are elite football academies with elite football coaches developing elite football players. There's no grading attached to player development there. They are given their chance to express themselves on the pitch because their club (usually) lacks the money to bring already-established players in on inflated wages.
I would say not only is it poor coaching that holds England back in the international stage, it is also their football culture. Very few English kids actually love playing the game, most see football as a means of acquiring fame, status, wealth etc. therefore they are not properly developed footballers. The media are quick to hype up any Englishman that has one good season, they end up being one-season wonders and back in the Championship or below after failing to fulfill early promises.
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Drewski
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And, fwiw, music has grading because different pieces of music are more complicated than one another - or can be made more or less complicated to suit the player's ability. Football is just football.
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llys
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(Original post by Drewski)
"I'm not playing with you, you're only a 2."

Yeah, great idea, another way for kids to bully and victimise one another.
LOL. Ever been to a youth game? "You're only a 2" would be the least of my worries.

(Original post by Drewski)
And, fwiw, music has grading because different pieces of music are more complicated than one another - or can be made more or less complicated to suit the player's ability. Football is just football.
I think the part in bold is not true. Even now, 6-year-olds play very differently from 8-year-olds (etc). Skill development obviously does exist in football, it's just not systematised.

(Original post by shawn_o1)
In mainland Europe, there are elite football academies with elite football coaches developing elite football players. There's no grading attached to player development there. They are given their chance to express themselves on the pitch because their club (usually) lacks the money to bring already-established players in on inflated wages.
I agree, but I still think that grades would be a good thing. I think a systematic way of coaching is probably better than an unsystematic way of coaching. (TBH I am convinced that elite football academies already have a systematic way of coaching, probably they use "levels" of some sort, it's just not spelt out in terms of grades or a public syllabus, so it is not useful for the rest of us.)

I would say not only is it poor coaching that holds England back in the international stage, it is also their football culture. Very few English kids actually love playing the game, most see football as a means of acquiring fame, status, wealth etc. therefore they are not properly developed footballers. The media are quick to hype up any Englishman that has one good season, they end up being one-season wonders and back in the Championship or below after failing to fulfill early promises.
I agree with this as well, but I'm only proposing grades for amateurs and maybe semi-professionals at the very most. I used to care about elite development, but I no longer do. I think at that level of the game they probably all dope anyway (at least for recovery and endurance), so what they achieve or not is not really relevant for the rest of the population.

(Original post by shawn_o1)
In mainland Europe, there are elite football academies with elite football coaches developing elite football players. There's no grading attached to player development there.
[Just as an aside, there is also no music grading in mainland Europe that I know of. I think I would be much better at the piano now if I had had to do grades. With hindsight, that's because my piano teacher was incompetent, so I just "played" the same pieces every year. On the other hand, my organ teacher was very good, so there grades wouldn't have mattered (but they also wouldn't have hurt).]
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