Where do I begin?
We talk often about “Heart.” Sometimes we use a variation of the same idea and we say he or she “Gets It.”
Gerhard Mengel told me over the weekend that in 1958 he came to the USA and went to a few trainings and practices with the local soccer clubs in Detroit area. He said that when he came to the Kickers he didn’t see skill in their team but he saw “heart.” Mengel put his hands to his chest to show how big the club’s heart was. (Of course anyone that knows Gerhard won’t be surprised that he said he went on to build skill into what they already had in their hearts)
We see that “heart,” we talk about today not just in Carpathia Kickers but in many clubs in the Donauschwaben Verband. As German-Americans we are never satisfied, but in our “heart,” as a pantheon of soccer clubs lies our greatest potential.
The U.S. National Donauschwaben Tournament and the amateur soccer clubs that are a part of it are great. It can all be better.
We have history, tradition, we play soccer. We have to commit to not just settle. We cannot become satisfied. Clubs need to hold each other accountable. Clubs need to compete and push each other forward. Challenge one another to take the potential in our “heart,” and run towards the goal with it.
Our tournament is our gathering place. It is a wonderful who’s who of Schwobs and soccer while still being equal parts battleground and comradeship.
We need to extend our activity and our heart into a year-long turnout of sport.
“We’ve worked hard for this. As long as we have a tournament we have a future,” – Mike Talan, Landessportleiter
We have the tools.
We have the heart.
We have the potential to be greater with every tournament, with every match, every pass, play, goal, or save than we ever have before.