Degree Type

Thesis (Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Date Information

May 2016


Sport and Movement Science

First Advisor

Stuart McMahon


The objective of this thesis is to compare and contrast the differences between the cultural impact on the development of youth soccer players in the United States and the continent of Europe. Along with the cultural differences, I will be looking at the importance of playing for clubs/academies and the importance of coaches. The European model has proven to be an exceptional model in terms of developing athletes. The clubs and coaches in Europe have developed exceptional players, such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi. This is all down to players, such as these exceptional talents, being nurtured and protected by these clubs and coaches as they grow up. When it comes to culture, Europeans see soccer differently than Americans. Soccer and sports in general, are viewed as just entertainment in the US. It's a money-making industry. In Europe, the mentality is different. Soccer is a way to express yourself and to show your passion. What can the US learn from the European model? How can the US be on the same level as many European countries? Could they instill the same passion as the Europeans have for the beautiful game? That's what we are going to look at in this thesis. The US have the resources, but it's how they use it to their advantage.