Fuel Soccer Talk: National League Season Preview; Leicester City’s training session focuses on the details; Examining the risks of playing just one sport?

U.S. Youth Soccer releases 2019-20 National League Season Preview

The US Youth Soccer National League competition is for the nation’s top teams in the 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, 18U and 19U boys and girls age groups. The National League offers additional exposure to collegiate, professional and U.S. National Team coaches, as players compete in meaningful matches. Teams in the National League are competing for a place in the US Youth Soccer National Championships, as well as earning requalification into the National League for the following season.


Behind the Scenes Video: Leicester City trains for Brighton

One of the pleasant surprises in the Premier League is once again Leicester City. Sitting tied for second in the table, Brendan Rodgers’ club is 8-2-2 for 26 points early in the 2019-20 season and have staying power. They sit eight points back of Liverpool, tied with Chelsea and one point ahead of Manchester City. Here a great behind the scenes clip of Rodgers’ side as they prepare for Saturday’s Premier League trip to face the Seagulls.

Check out the focus of these players. Taking care of the details and doing the little things helps create success.

Analyzing the psychological consequences of the pressures and expectations of playing just one sport

Ethan Bauer at did a wonderful story – part of a series – on young athletes playing one sport and whether they are at greater risk of injury – both physical and mental.

Most high school coaches suggest players at that age play multiple sports for multiple reason. But youth sports specialization continues to be a popular path to success even if it does increase the risk of physical injury.

In the story, Bauer says orthopedic surgeons across the country are sounding the alarm about overuse injuries in kids with similar specialization histories.

The potential consequences of youth sports specialization also aren’t limited to physical injuries. As America’s youth sports programs continue to drift toward specialization and professionalization, the physical injuries seem more pressing — they’re immediately obvious, make sports participation impossible and have been addressed at length. Less discussed are the psychological consequences of the pressures and expectations that accompany early specialization.

Like physical injuries, psychological wounds can accumulate over time and appear later in childhood or into adulthood. But unlike broken bones or torn ligaments, mental ailments can fester undetected, even to the child, said Northwestern University professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences Jenny Conviser. And there’s no timetable for recovery.