We got this soccer set by Little Tikes for Matthew on his 2nd birthday in October 2009. We didn't get it out until this year in the spring though to give Matthew more time to develop more stability while walking, especially on our uneven, weed-ridden front lawn. He had just started taking independent steps when he was 21 months old.
The goal structure is made of metal, which makes it sturdy and doesn't blow over easily on windy days. It doesn't come apart at all if the ball is kicked into the goal with force.
This soccer set has been great for kicking practice. The ball with this set is slightly smaller than a standard-sized soccer ball and it's perfect for Matthew. But we use the standard ball anyway as there is a smaller chance of him tripping with it. He used to trip over the ball (big or small) and over his feet quite often when he first started but he's gotten much better at it now. However, I don't think he's ready for the World Cup just yet.
The set comes with mini orange practice cones which we sometimes line up and guide Matthew in and around them while holding a ball - just because it's fun. When he's older, we can practice weaving around the cones while kicking a ball for coordination. He can learn fancy soccer footwork and moves from his cousin when he's older, if he's still interested in soccer.
Right now, he's happy with simply kicking and throwing the ball around. It would be more fun with friends. (Elizabeth hasn't developed her soccer legs yet.)