As the summer comes to a close and winter begins to enter the minds of area residents, parents everywhere will begin to wonder how to overcome cabin fever. Futsal could be the answer.
Futsal, or indoor soccer, first gained notoriety in South America in the 1930s when an Argentine physical education teacher created the sport in response to the need for an indoor activity during inclement weather in Uruguay.
The sport has grown to gain the approval of FIFA, the governing body of world soccer, as the only sanctioned form of indoor soccer with its own male and female World Cup competitions.
Some of the world’s greatest players like Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo attribute futsal as a key factor in their professional preparation.
Futsal is an important aspect of a young players development. Jürgen Klinsmann, head coach of the U.S. Men’s National Soccer Team, advocates the sport, “I’m a big fan of futsal. The game is played on a high tempo and very demanding technically so you definitely sharpen your technical skills in it. You know, you have to make decisions really quickly on the court or on the field. I think futsal is a great alternative or a great addition to whatever you do outside.”
Futsal promotes ball control, precision passing, powerful striking, and possession. With touchlines and goal lines, futsal aligns more with the outdoor game than playing off the walls in arena soccer, which often results in a player loosing his passing touch.
In addition, futsal is much more of a game of finesse as shoulder charging and slide tackling are discouraged by an accumulated foul system similar to basketball.
The sport is now in the Round Lake Area. Standard Sport & Futsal, a locally owned and operated business, is the premier futsal organization in northern Lake County and the only organization affiliated with United States Youth Futsal and United States Soccer Federation.
League Chairman, Dr. Michael Cooper, began the organization in order to help facilitate the development of young soccer athletes in the area. “Our family has been involved in soccer for more than 15 years in the Round Lake Area and we have seen the great pool of soccer talent. We are hoping that players, parents, and coaches will recognize the potential for futsal to take their players’ soccer skills to a new level.”
The league will begin its inaugural season this November. Cooper says, “not only do we expect to see players develop, but we also recognize the financial investment parents make in their kids.”
Many leagues around the area cost between $1,200-$2,400 per team. Futsal is far more economical at $600-$650 per team. “We are very excited to bring, not only an effective training and development sport, but also an economical one that is accessible to all families.”
He adds, “Futsal is fun, fast, and furious. You are sure to love it!”
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