Kicking about soccer wrong


    I would like to express my disappointment over the reselection of the AYSO Boys Under-12 All-Star soccer team.

    When I was chosen to coach the team, the division director, myself and the rest of the coaches nominated 21 players for consideration — 15 to be on the team, plus 3 alternates. This was done on Tuesday, Nov 23. The following Saturday the division director gave me the OK to call the boys that were selected. I did and everyone called accepted.

    The following Tuesday at the Bluffs Park the AYSO commissioner said to me he was unsure about two of the players chosen. However, (and these were the commissioner’s words), “If you don’t hear from me or anyone else by tonight, consider the team to be final.” I waited until Thursday. Nobody called me with any changes, so everyone chosen for All-Stars was contacted again, to set up a practice.

    Due to the sudden illness of my daughter, Michelle, I decided to relinquish my head coaching duties. The position should have been turned over to our Assistant Coach, James Whalen, with the team left intact.

    However, a new coach was brought in, and five players were replaced on the team, some of whom were never even given the courtesy of a phone call, to inform them they had been replaced. After six years of coaching boy’s soccer here in Malibu, I believe I have a good understanding of how a team should be chosen. It should not be based upon how much influence can be exerted on behalf of players who were not chosen, by parents who now wish to restructure the team.

    Certainly a wrong message is being sent, both to those being summarily dismissed, and to those newly acquiring a position on the team in such a strange manner, that it is all right to treat players and parents in this way.

    As in any selection process, some people will be disappointed. The team was chosen based on positions, ability and chemistry. Age and size were not a consideration.

    Mike Doyle