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Old 06-26-2014, 06:39 PM   #61
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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Originally Posted by Biocockanics View Post
Their ability isn't in foot creativity or agility, its power and size...that wont change with Lebron or Noah.

I'll stand by that, smaller, faster more compact players are better suited for certain positions.
Thanks 1940s thinking. People used to say the same about being too tall to dribble well enough to be a guard in basketball or too tall to run good routes in football. There are 1000s of American athletes with more agility and talent that are over 6'3 in American than those out there playing in the World Cup at the heights you listed.

I'm not saying those guys could pick up the sport and play tomorrow but of these guys played all their lives they'd be out dominating in the field.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:04 PM   #62
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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Thanks 1940s thinking. People used to say the same about being too tall to dribble well enough to be a guard in basketball or too tall to run good routes in football. There are 1000s of American athletes with more agility and talent that are over 6'3 in American than those out there playing in the World Cup at the heights you listed.

I'm not saying those guys could pick up the sport and play tomorrow but of these guys played all their lives they'd be out dominating in the field.
Then why is the best goal scorer in the world 5'7"?

Granted CR7 is over 6' and Zlatan is 6'4" but he's an outlier. Most of the best scoters in the world are under 6'. Tevez, Suarez, Neymar, etc.

If bigger can be better than where are the 6'10" point guards?
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:09 PM   #63
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

Thanks out of context reader. I'm not saying you can't play and be tall, I'm saying for whatever reason the taller guys dont succeed at the steady striker/attacker position.--In this case it's easy for a smaller striker because you can get lost in the scrum sometimes...I know, I was a specialist at it

I'm saying that certain body types are typically better at certain positions, TYPICALLY these taller guys in the world--some of which are elite-- are great at winning the header or jump ball but typically, again, aren't that great with their feet.

Peter Crouch is the exception, he was a physical freak.

MOST of your bigger body tall guys will be on defense, whether that is by innate talent OR because coaches want big strong bodies in the box.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:09 PM   #64
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

^^^^

There are spots for big men in soccer but not at every position just like any other sport.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:10 PM   #65
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

I don't feel like some here are paying enough attention to what great soccer players do well. Seriously, make a list of the best players in the world, top 50 or so. They aren't exceptionally fast, on average. Nor are they particularly gifted in other biomechanical ways. Foot-eye coordination is obviously important, but being a great soccer player tends to come down to craft more than machinery. So, all the emphasis on physical measurables is a little misguided.

I'm not saying measurables don't matter at all, I'm just saying that it isn't what best explains the gap between American players and foreign players. Germany isn't better because they would have better combine numbers than us. They are just better at playing soccer.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:14 PM   #66
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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Then why is the best goal scorer in the world 5'7"?

Granted CR7 is over 6' and Zlatan is 6'4" but he's an outlier. Most of the best scoters in the world are under 6'. Tevez, Suarez, Neymar, etc.

If bigger can be better than where are the 6'10" point guards?
Because most of the world doesn't have any good athletes over 6 foot, especially that play soccer.

LeBron plays point at 6'8 and magic played at 6'6. PGs have gotten much bigger in the last 10-20 years.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:19 PM   #67
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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I don't feel like some here are paying enough attention to what great soccer players do well. Seriously, make a list of the best players in the world, top 50 or so. They aren't exceptionally fast, on average. Nor are they particularly gifted in other biomechanical ways. Foot-eye coordination is obviously important, but being a great soccer player tends to come down to craft more than machinery. So, all the emphasis on physical measurables is a little misguided.

I'm not saying measurables don't matter at all, I'm just saying that it isn't what best explains the gap between American players and foreign players. Germany isn't better because they would have better combine numbers than us. They are just better at playing soccer.
What you are missing is that we are saying you could get that same craft in a better physically rounded athlete, if more of the top specimens would play. People have said the same things about every sport and as players get bigger and better they defy the size issues that were seen as a problem before.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:26 PM   #68
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

I don't know how popular futsal is in the US. I haven't lived in my country for 12 years, but it is huge in a lot of countries that dominate in football (soccer). We need to get more and more kids involved in futsal. Maybe even introduce it into Middle and High Schools. It's probably the best thing we could do in America to teach our young athletes the skills they need to be successful in soccer.

I think this would go a long way in a short amount of time to increase our chances of being a soccer powerhouse on the world stage, not to mention the positive affects it would have on MLS.

http://www.futsaluk.net/

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Old 06-26-2014, 07:32 PM   #69
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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What you are missing is that we are saying you could get that same craft in a better physically rounded athlete, if more of the top specimens would play. People have said the same things about every sport and as players get bigger and better they defy the size issues that were seen as a problem before.
I'm not missing anything. I just watch a lot of soccer and find the focus of this conversation a bit odd. Sure, we can imagine Messi with Deion Sanders speed and 5 more inches of height and a 40" vertical, yadda yadda, but it seems much more important to note how good he is at handling the ball with his feet, or how well technicians like David Silva or Christian Eriksen orchestrate offensive opportunities (like a great point guard might). None of those guys have impressive measurables. But they can play.
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Old 06-26-2014, 07:56 PM   #70
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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Because most of the world doesn't have any good athletes over 6 foot, especially that play soccer.

LeBron plays point at 6'8 and magic played at 6'6. PGs have gotten much bigger in the last 10-20 years.
Magic was 6'9".
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Old 06-26-2014, 08:34 PM   #71
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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I'm not missing anything. I just watch a lot of soccer and find the focus of this conversation a bit odd. Sure, we can imagine Messi with Deion Sanders speed and 5 more inches of height and a 40" vertical, yadda yadda, but it seems much more important to note how good he is at handling the ball with his feet, or how well technicians like David Silva or Christian Eriksen orchestrate offensive opportunities (like a great point guard might). None of those guys have impressive measurables. But they can play.
Right...and my point is that Deion Sanders could have developed that as well. Had he done that with his size and speed, then we come to the issue at hand...Messi as we know him today isn't as special.

I'm not talking purely size, speed, and weight. I am talking talent, too. The ability to shift gears and see the field like most WRs in the NFL do is sharpened talent.

...so in my little example of myself as a kid/young teen. I was a leading goal scorer and MVP of my team as a adolescent up until 12-13 years old. I was faster, more aggressive/tenacious, and simply more talented than quite a few of the others. I took my talents to football and baseball- the sports I also played, but really cared about. It's what I grew up on and my idols played. I couldn't name a single soccer player except for Pele.

Most of my future football/baseball teammates did the same...and left a pool of soccer players behind to play baseball/football. Those soccer players stayed with it through high school and ended up going to State Championship and winning individual awards for the area/league. I wasn't very impressed because I felt like if THAT KID who I schooled up and down the field at one time was "that good" in soccer, what does that say about the talent level? Also, growing up it wasn't "cool" to play soccer whenever football and baseball were available. That has changed quite a bit and is improving a lot, I can see that.

This is coming across as "soccer pulls the least talent of any sport" but that isn't at all what I am trying to say. If my hypotheses sounds like that in any way, it is only because (back to my original point) that America isn't the best at the sport (or near it) with the extreme talent and dominating players we have in the sports we DO focus at...then maybe there is a real talent gap for the professionals in soccer.
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:07 PM   #72
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

Well, we have the best women's team in the world. I reckon we have the best female athletes playing that sport?
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:08 PM   #73
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

Cola, if you read my prior comment, you can see my larger perspective, which isn't totally out of line with yours. However, my emphasis is on skill development, as well as better development of intuitive game play (I would need to unpack what this means). We both agree that greater cultural attention to soccer (which would follow from greater popularity) would improve the quality of our players dramatically.

But, I don't think the reason has nearly as much to do with the fact that Deion (or whoever) might've chosen to develop soccer talent. In a cultural environment in which everyone tried to excel at soccer, I'm not so sure Deion ends up in the same elite class a he did in football. Speed and juke moves don't distinguish soccer athletes in the same way. It is, of course, possible that he would develop an elite set of skills that matter, but I don't think that conclusion follows from the mere fact that he has freakish speed and punt return skills. I am much more inclined to infer an innate aptitude for soccer based up the sort of ball skills and field/court vision displayed by point guards and athletic QBs.

Of course, I want to again qualify all this by limiting it to attacking midfield and forward positions. I think physical factors like size, speed, etc. are more relevant for defensive positions. It is there where I can see more credible translation from defensive personnel in football.
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:16 PM   #74
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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Originally Posted by Transmaniacon View Post
Cola, if you read my prior comment, you can see my larger perspective, which isn't totally out of line with yours. However, my emphasis is on skill development, as well as better development of intuitive game play (I would need to unpack what this means). We both agree that greater cultural attention to soccer (which would follow from greater popularity) would improve the quality of our players dramatically.

But, I don't think the reason has nearly as much to do with the fact that Deion (or whoever) might've chosen to develop soccer talent. In a cultural environment in which everyone tried to excel at soccer, I'm not so sure Deion ends up in the same elite class a he did in football. Speed and juke moves don't distinguish soccer athletes in the same way. It is, of course, possible that he would develop an elite set of skills that matter, but I don't think that conclusion follows from the mere fact that he has freakish speed and punt return skills. I am much more inclined to infer an innate aptitude for soccer based up the sort of ball skills and field/court vision displayed by point guards an QBs.

Of course, I want to again qualify all this by limiting it to attacking midfield an forward positions. I think physical factors like size, speed, etc are more relevant for defensive positions. It is there where I can see more credible translation from football ddefensive players.
You are getting to caught up on it being literally Deion, when in reality we are talking about guys with his athletic ability. There are 1000s of freak athletes who try to play football but don't have, as you put it, the craft mastered. If you took those same athletes and raised them in a soccer culture, we'd have the best players in the world.

You will always have guys with different heights and skill sets but the overall athleticism and size would increase if the USA team had elite athletes playing soccer.
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Old 06-26-2014, 10:07 PM   #75
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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You are getting to caught up on it being literally Deion, when in reality we are talking about guys with his athletic ability. There are 1000s of freak athletes who try to play football but don't have, as you put it, the craft mastered. If you took those same athletes and raised them in a soccer culture, we'd have the best players in the world.

You will always have guys with different heights and skill sets but the overall athleticism and size would increase if the USA team had elite athletes playing soccer.
I'm just using Deion as an example. When I first read through the thread, a general idea being expressed was that if all our young athletes aspired to be soccer stars, then you wouldn't see players on our team that look like Kyle Beckerman. Instead, we would have Kobe, Lebron, Desean Jackson, Ray Lewis, or [insert favorite pro athlete]. And, my response is "why not"? I mean, I realize Beckerman isn't world class, but many world class players have comparable physical attributes (even dreadlocks!). The presumption seemed to be that there is some general athletic prototype and aptitude that translates unproblematically from on sport to another. But, that seems way too simple to me. And, all you have to do is watch the best teams to see why.
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Old 06-26-2014, 10:21 PM   #76
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

Ann Coulter is not impressed. Batshit crazy at its finest. Funny none the less.
https://news.yahoo.com/ann-coulter-w...182845703.html

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"If more 'Americans' are watching soccer today, it's only because of the demographic switch effected by Teddy Kennedy's 1965 immigration law," Coulter adds. "I promise you: No American whose great-grandfather was born here is watching soccer. One can only hope that, in addition to learning English, these new Americans will drop their soccer fetish with time."
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"The prospect of either personal humiliation or major injury is required to count as a sport," she writes. "Most sports are sublimated warfare."

In American football, she writes, "ambulances carry off the wounded. After a soccer game, every player gets a ribbon and a juice box."
More gold comments in article
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Old 06-26-2014, 10:55 PM   #77
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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I'm just using Deion as an example. When I first read through the thread, a general idea being expressed was that if all our young athletes aspired to be soccer stars, then you wouldn't see players on our team that look like Kyle Beckerman. Instead, we would have Kobe, Lebron, Desean Jackson, Ray Lewis, or [insert favorite pro athlete]. And, my response is "why not"? I mean, I realize Beckerman isn't world class, but many world class players have comparable physical attributes (even dreadlocks!). The presumption seemed to be that there is some general athletic prototype and aptitude that translates unproblematically from on sport to another. But, that seems way too simple to me. And, all you have to do is watch the best teams to see why.
As I said earlier, most of these other countries don't have as many of the athletes that we are talking about. That's why you might see one or two but when we have 100x1 or may be even 1000x1 of the athletes we are discussing to other countries, it makes a huge difference. Basketball has become a world wide game, yet the USA has far more athletes making up the NBA. That's not because it's an American League but because we have better pure athletes than other countries.

It makes no sense for height to hinder a soccer player, since everyone's feet touch the ground. So it really comes down to agility, which you can get guys like John wall who could run circles around the FIFA guys. America sends it's D level athletes to the World Cup and we are top 16 team in the world, that's a you need to know about what type of athletes are playing soccer.
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Old 06-26-2014, 11:40 PM   #78
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

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As I said earlier, most of these other countries don't have as many of the athletes that we are talking about. That's why you might see one or two but when we have 100x1 or may be even 1000x1 of the athletes we are discussing to other countries, it makes a huge difference. Basketball has become a world wide game, yet the USA has far more athletes making up the NBA. That's not because it's an American League but because we have better pure athletes than other countries.

It makes no sense for height to hinder a soccer player, since everyone's feet touch the ground. So it really comes down to agility, which you can get guys like John wall who could run circles around the FIFA guys. America sends it's D level athletes to the World Cup and we are top 16 team in the world, that's a you need to know about what type of athletes are playing soccer.
I don't think you are paying sufficient attention to the actual sport of soccer. No one "runs circles" around opponents. It is much more about ball control, timing, and situational reads/reaction than you suggest with absurd claims about what John Wall would be able to do against elite opposition in soccer. Do you really think Brazil's raw talent pool is that inferior to ours (in terms of size, speed, etc.)? Yet, scrawny lil' Neymar is their starting striker and most potent offensive weapon. Or look at Oscar in the midfield. Or Fred. Or Paulinho. Take your pick. This is in a soccer-crazed nation with a highly diverse gene pool, yet the best players don't look anything like the pro athletes everyone keeps mentioning here. And, if height were that important, you wouldn't expect relatively short (on average) teams from Latin America to do so well against taller European and African competition. Height can be helpful on set pieces, to be sure, but the higher center of gravity can be a disadvantage in other aspects of the game.

All of this just strikes me as intellectually lazy, to be honest. A closer look at the patterns underlying elite play in soccer reveals why bigger, stronger, faster isn't as decisive as it might be for a wide receiver or running back. Old men like Ryan Giggs can still outplay fresh, young, speedy legs around them. I'm not saying it is all that common, and he doesn't play full games anymore, but it does reveal ways that ball skills and the ability to read the game around you are king in soccer. And, I think point guards and QBs have a longer shelf life for similar reasons in their respective sports.

Anyway, I'm just repeating myself at this point.
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Old 06-27-2014, 12:25 AM   #79
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

I think a lot of people are assuming some of the physical attributes nba and NFL players have gained over the years through specific workouts would have translated over if they had been training for soccer all their lives .. Yes a lot of those athletes are naturally gifted with genetic traits like height etc but the strength in many muscle groups, cardiovascular training etc would be much more tailor to soccer ... A soccer player is going to lift and train different from a football player who are also going to train differently from basketball players
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Old 06-27-2014, 01:10 AM   #80
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Default Re: Talent Level In Professional Soccer?

Win anyway!
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