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Landon Donovan: ‘A 10-year-old doesn’t need to be heading a soccer ball’

By Mike Woitalla

Landon Donovan, the greatest player the USA has ever produced, recently appeared on “The Dan Patrick Show” and was asked about heading in youth soccer.

Beginning this year, U.S. Soccer has eliminated heading for children 10 and under, and put limits on the amount of heading in practice for children ages of 11 to 13.

“I think until you’re a certain age there’s no real need for [heading],” said Donovan. “A 10-year-old doesn’t need to be heading a soccer ball. It’s not like they’re gaining much in the game by doing that.

“Teach them how to do it, and by the time they hit 15, 16, 17 start to allow it a little bit more. But there’s no need for someone of that age to be heading a soccer ball. Just like there’s no need for someone to be tackling like football.”