U8 Guidelines

Soccer is still all about having fun with the ball and encouraging the children to want to have the ball at their feet.  The numbers should still be one and two players to a ball.

These children are still young. By the end of this phase, (around eight- years-old) children are beginning to be able to apply past experience to the present situation.  For example, at a simple level, they can remember what they were shown or what they tried with the ball from last practice.  At the same time, this ability is not present on a consistent basis.  They are still not able to imagine consequences (i.e., if you do this, what will happen?).  Let them learn through experience.

Do not attempt to replicate organizational schemes that you have seen older teams doing.  Seven and eight year olds are not capable of playing anything that resembles organized soccer.  For example, team concepts such as combination play or positions should not be introduced at this age.

Do use older players as mentors and role models.  Often the younger players will learn simply by watching how the older players move or by what they can do with the ball.


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