A few parents had approached me throughout the season about why we weren
A few parents had approached me throughout the season about why we
weren't doing things with the girls at practice and expressing their
displeasure. I believe I addressed them with "Bob's coaching style is
different." I didn't tell them about the letter we exchanged and your
response regarding what I believe it would take to get the girls prepared.
And I didn't bad-mouth you or personally attack you in any way. If you feel
I did, I apologize for that.
Thanks for letting me know that Maddie won't be attending tryouts tonight
so we can open up her spot and I wish her the best of luck in the future.
Personally, your email contained several inaccurate and misleading
statements that I’d like to set the record straight on.
1. Jackie signed up to be one of our team managers and took the
responsibility for getting the uniform orders from each player and
placing it with Gamers. As we all know Jackie quit before this task
was completed and left two other parents in a bind to get her job
done, as well as, to pay for the items that she failed to add.
2. You were part of our coaching staff yet you consistently made subtle
or not so subtle backstabbing and second-guessing comments to
our players, parents, FASA’s Coaching Director, as well as, the FASA
Technical Director. Again the most important attribute for an assistant
coach is for complete loyalty and trust and you broke both of them.
3. Yes, I think that it is ridiculous that you’re still upset about me not
personally calling your family and offering Maddie a position on the
team; however, Vito, you and I selected the team so I didn’t see a
need to call/email you to confirm that she accepted her position.
4. In my opinion, starting practices three weeks prior to the season is
more then adequate at the U-9 level. As I tried to explain to you I
believe that the month of July is the off-season and it’s good for the
parents and players to get a break and if you wanted extra training
for Maddie there were plenty of camps available to fulfill her and
your needs. I did state that even if I wanted to start practices earlier
I couldn’t because I had already made a commitment for taking my
high school volleyball team to VA Tech that week and I don’t break
my commitments. FYI, I’ve been involved with travel soccer as both
a player and coach and every team that I’ve been involved with has
always had the month of July off and I wasn’t going to change that
philosophy because you didn’t like it.
5. “We expected the girls to learn foot skills and basic passing which is
what you told me would be the focus when Jackie and I met with
you. We didn't expect corner kick plays , learning new drills during
game warm-ups and confusion.” Frankly, I’m not sure what you’re
talking about as we worked on one corner kick play at two practices
for roughly 15 minutes each session. Also, I’m not sure what new
drills you’re talking about, because we did the same warm-up routine
before each game
6. “When I expressed to you what I felt needed to be done to conduct
practice to teach the girls soccer.” Ed your position was an assistant
coach and your job was to assist me in running my program and not
to try and create your own. I thanked you for your opinions and
explained why I wasn’t implementing them after just four games into
our season and you choose to not support me and instead threw me
under the bus by telling the parent’s that "Bob's coaching style is
7. Lastly, it’s a blatant If you don't like how Carl conducts practice or
think the session was a waste of time, you should tell him instead of
expressing it to parents on the sideline. I have a tremendous
respect for Carl as does a lot of other people involved with FASA,
ODP and soccer in Virginia.
8. Pete Cinelli and I are friends and I’ve been player, coach and
referee and have over 30 years experience, so I’m not going to
change my philosophy because an assistant coach who never has
played the game gives me advice that’s co
9. We don't expect the practice season to begin two weeks later than
most other teams. When I asked you about this you stated you were
at VA Tech with your volleyball team.
10. Additionally, what we are trying to do and it’s caused serious
problems between our players and parents. Frankly, as an assistant
coach you need to respect my decisions and if you have a problem
with them I’d expected you to be man enough to approach me in
private to discuss them rather then letting it bottle it up inside, letting
it stew, and then sharing your complaints amongst other parents on
our sidelines. I’ll be the first to say that I’m not perfect, but perhaps
given some additional explanation you might understand what we’re
trying to do and if not at least you’d know why we’re doing what
we’re doing. Therefore, I appreciate all your help this season;
however, I cannot have an assistant coach that I’ve lost trust in, as
well as, has shown disrespect towards me by leaving our bench and
then questioning my coaching decisions on the sidelines. For this
reason, effective immediately you’re actions has called for me to
regrettably relieve you of your assistant coaching duties.
Bob, let's be honest, tryouts are only mandatory if the player wants
to remian on the team. There is no "yearly commitment" to a team in
FASA which is why they have tryouts each season. We believe that you
earn a spot on an elite travel team and it isn't an automatic pass from
season to season.
I had already expressed to both the FASA coaching director and technical
director that Maddie was not interested in remaining on the team and we
were not interested in paying for another season where she would fall
behind other players in her age group and loose her desire to play.
Regarding the rumor that I asked Carl to address the parents or take over
training, Carl conducted training based on what others (coaches and
parents) witnessed at an early season game and what he personally saw
and heard at one of the last games. I was told in September that Carl
would be visiting the U9 and U10 teams to evaluate how things were
Let's talk about commitments. You are the paid coach and we are paying
parents. You are supplying a service for which we expect quality in return.
We expected an email/phone call inviting our child to be a player on the
team after tryouts. When we asked for one, we shouldn't have received
the notion that "you're a coach so your child is on the team."
We don't expect the practice season to begin two weeks later than most
other teams. When I asked you about this you stated you were at VA Tech
with your volleyball team.
We don't expect our child to receive her complete uniform after the playing
season starts. One of the most exciting things for an 8 year old is
receiving her uniform.
We expected the girls to learn foot skills and basic passing which is what
you told me would be the focus when Jackie and I met with you. We didn't
expect corner kick plays , learning new drills during game warm-ups and
We expected our daughter to learn how to play soccer at a higher level
and increase her enjoyment of soccer. We did not expect our daughter to
be yelled at and as a result loose her desire and drive to play soccer.
When I expressed to you what I felt needed to be done to conduct practice
to teach the girls soccer, your response was in part "I have a long term
goal to teach them the skills they need to make their high school or college
team." That's nice, but we want Maddie to learn the skills she needs and
have a joy of the game so she can try out for her ODP team and possibly a
college team if she desires. We don't care much about middle school or
high school teams as they have more of a social aspect in the soccer
Regarding this past weekend's games, after the first game, Maddie
expressed that she didn't want to play any longer. We convinced her that
playing in the second game would be the right thing to do. After the
second game, she stated "I don't want to be yelled at anymore." Over the
season, we watched her joy for the game steadily diminish. I didn't see
any benefit of us driving down to Richmond to repeat Saturday's events.
Also, she was a little upset with a comment she heard about the guest
player being "the best player on the team." Whether it was stated or
implied or not, players should never get the impression that one player is
"the best" on the team. Each player should have their strengths and
weaknesses and a coach's job is to teach them how to play so that their
strengths compliment the team.
We missed the practice session and meeting on 5 November. I did hear
about what happened and what was said from various sources. I have a
word of advice: If you don't like how Carl conducts practice or think the
session was a waste of time, you should tell him instead of expressing it to
parents on the sideline. I have a tremendous respect for Carl as does a lot
of other people involved with FASA, ODP and soccer in Virginia.
With an older daughter in the program for the last six years, we have been
firmly committed to FASA. Which is why it pains us to have to decide to
allow Maddie to try out and accept a position on another team.