The U9 of the Florida Gulf Coast Dutch Lions FC is the story of 8 kids who never played together in a team. But at the end of the Fall season they won the league undefeated.
That there was talent in the group was clear, but was it also a team? The U9 started practicing in August with coach Klaas. Coach Klaas started the first half a year focusing on the technical part of the game. Every practice was with the ball and focusing on the most important part of the game: Controlling the bal.
During the season coach Klaas saw that the players were developing themselves not only as a player, but also as a group and a person. “For the players it was hard to play with each other at the beginning, but during the season they showed that they are a team.” Said coach Klaas after one of the practices. And the result of this was the titel in the league, undefeated, second place at the Kelme cup and a second place at the Thanksgiving Cup.
This weekend the team goes to the Weston Cup in Miami, and will play against the strongest teams of the Miami region. Coach Klaas is still sanguine: “The Miami teams are very strong, but the strength of our team is that they are technical good and are a team. So I am positive about the end result.” Also the practice of this week is totally focused on the Weston Cup. “We are practicing tactical this week, because it will be the first tournament they will play with offside.”
After this tournament the U9 will start the Spring season. It is the beginning of a new chase on the titel of the league. But coach Klaas is rational when they bring up this topic: “The players did excellent last half a year and they won the league. But it is not only about winning, it is about developing the players and the team. When they develop themselves as players they will develop as a team as well.“
When we look to the future coach Klaas has a clear view and a developing route for the players: “This is not a club and a team for the short term, this is a team what we want to develop. If they work hard and keep developing as they do now we can do a lot of good things in the future with this group.”