Boychild has been in soccer almost year-round since he was in first grade. It is much more his pace than baseball, which has long stretches of standing in the outfield or on a bench. Excercise, teamwork, and the chance to watch and learn from other kids and from grownups other than his teachers or parents are all good reasons to keep him in soccer. Plus, he’s actually good at it.
He greatly favors defense, including the goalie position. He’s an amazing goalie, and his abilities to zip in out of nowhere and kick the ball away from the opposing side make him a valuable defensive player. However, he seems to largely lack the ball- and self-control to be an effective offensive player. Since he prefers the defensive positions, and doesn’t seem to mind that he therefore rarely gets to score a goal, this works out alright. “Doesn’t mind” doesn’t mean he doesn’t like scoring goals, of course, and he is proud that he has scored at least one goal each season.
We are now in the winter session. They play indoors in a really nice field which even takes cleats. The winter team tends to be the very dedicated kids, so the ratio of very good kids to mediocre is pretty high. Yesterday they faced their toughest competition, and the coach put him on offense. For the first part of the game, he didn’t really know what he was doing and was not very effective. But it didn’t take him long to remember to play his position. Once he remembered “the rules”, as it where, and what he was supposed to do, he stuck to it like a champ. The other kid on offense is one of the best offensive players. He’s fast and agile. He would therefore bring the ball up the field with apparent ease, only to be confronted by half of the other team, who saw him rightly as a threat. His only option then would be to look for an opening to his teammate, and sure enough, that is where he would find boychild, reliably waiting at an angle to the goal, just like he should be. This way he managed to get several shots on goal, and TWO WENT IN! Two goals in one game!
His team sadly lost 6 – 3, and of course one could ask whether he as defender could have kept the other team down from scoring 6 goals. But we can’t go down that line of thinking since it would never end. Instead, we can, and do, congratulate the boy on playing effective offense and scoring two of his team’s three goals.