Hurlstone Park Wanderers supports the Small Sided Football format for our younger players. The format allows children to develop their skills and confidence in the sport without the competitive pressure of inter-club games. The children are organised into “houses” of up to 20 players, and each house trains as single squad. On game day, each house is divided into teams to play against teams from other houses. The house teams will vary each week, so your child will not always play with the same players, but will always play with others from their house. The houses play against each other on a rotating roster.
As the games are played in-house between fellow Hurlstone Park teams, we are better able to track and support the progress of players and teams through the season, and to assist coaches, parents and players. The format also discourages specialisation (for instance, there is no goalkeeper for U6 and U7 teams), so players develop a sense of the game overall and of the different roles and responsibilities that are required in a team.
The format of small sided football relies on us having house managers and coaches who are willing to assist with coaching on weeknights and organising teams on Saturdays. We need parents to volunteer for these roles, which are very rewarding, and give you a chance to get involved in your child’s sport. Even if you have never played football or watched football before, your skills and experience as a parent will be perfect for this role. We provide coach support and training for the house managers.
Houses and team formation
The age co-ordinator will be responsible for the initial allocation of children to houses, keeping in mind the information that you have given us about your training preferences and friends in the club. Within the club, the houses are identified by the night that they train and by the colour of their match shirts. e.g. Thursday Red or Wednesday Purple. If your house wants to be Slytherin (or anything else), that’s fine, but let us know.
Under 6s and 7s play in 4-a-side teams with no goalkeeper.