2612568276918. Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer

Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer

Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer

Alan Hargreaves

Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer – This is meant to be a friendly book, in which I have endeavored to share with readers some of the approaches, ideas, and methods I have found useful during many years of experience. The book is particularly designed to help men and women coaching youth soccer teams, and college and university students who intend to specialize in soccer coaching.

For most of my professional life I have conducted courses and clinics for exactly such audiences; I have coached players ranging from 5-year-olds in California to seasoned professionals in the English League.

Few books start with the beginner and then provide, in a progressive sequence, practices suitable for professional players. Also, few if any books on soccer coaching invite the reader to consider a coaching style that is not only practical but also philosophical. This style combines a concern for the dignity of the individual with a love for the manner in which the game is played. Experience has proven this style to be effective in producing winning teams.

Readers of this book, whatever their experience, will find something of value to share and to use in their teaching of soccer.



In Part I, I explain my views on some important ethical questions in coaching and outline some strategies that I have found useful when dealing with both individuals and groups of players. The ideas introduced in this section should help the reader understand the following chapters on the coaching of skills, tactics, and team management. Even if the reader is entirely familiar with everything in this section, he or she should gain something from it; I have found that having one’s own ideas confirmed by someone else can be an encouraging experience.

Ethics and Coaching

In a soccer career extending over 20 or 30 years, a player will work with many different coaches who have their own ideas and personal coaching styles. While coaches will always differ in their approaches to tactics and teamwork, I hope they share a common view about sportsmanship and the manner in which the game should be played.

This chapter discusses three considerations that constitute, in my opinion, the basis of a code of soccer ethics. The first consideration deals with why so many people throughout the world are attracted to soccer as a lifetime sport—that is, first as a player and then as a coach, administrator, or spectator..

The second consideration concerns the characteristics of what I call good play, by which I mean skillful and fair play. The third involves your own personal coaching philosophy. You may not agree with all my views, but the following material should help you clarify your own ideas about the satisfactions and achievements you personally expect to gain from coaching soccer.

Soccer as a Lifetime Sport

Those who are attracted to soccer as a lifetime sport are usually not motivated simply by keeping fit or meeting people, important though these objectives are. People play and watch soccer because they love the game itself and because they experience inner feelings of enjoyment, satisfaction, and achievement through playing soccer. They find soccer a game that is worth playing for its own sake. People play soccer because they enjoy it.

Every coach is responsible for creating an atmosphere that safeguards this enjoyment factor, especially for younger players. Yet coaches can- not force players to enjoy the game, which is why personal coaching ethics are so important. The art of coaching is getting players to enjoy soccer because they want to, not because a coach tells them to.

A love for soccer has to be nurtured and encouraged, achieving these leads directly to the second major consideration of soccer ethics. The link between all who love soccer is the ability to recognize and appreciate the meaning and importance of good play.

The Meaning and Importance of Good Play

Good play means play that is skillful. People who enjoy soccer as a life- time sport do so because either they are or were skillful players or because they are intelligent spectators who can appreciate skillful play by others, including team tactics as well as individual skill.

The development and appreciation of skill is of paramount importance in coaching. The level of skill that can be achieved will vary according to the age and experience of the player; thus, skillful play is a matter of judgment and intention as well as of execution. With all players, but especially with younger players, the coach must work hard to promote the desire or intention to play skillfully.

A useful example, which also demonstrates the importance of intelligent observation of the game, is the ill-informed coach who tells players to kick the ball whenever it comes to them. The informed coach, in exactly the same situation, may urge players to control the ball rather than kick it.

The difference between the two sets of advice lies in the greater knowledge of the informed coach, who appreciates the more advantageous moves that result from a controlled, composed mastery of the ball. I believe that the player who continually tries to exercise control is more likely to develop into a skillful player.

Similarly, the coach who appreciates and rewards the intention to play skillfully is more likely to be successful in the long run. He or she will certainly gain immense satisfaction when players improve as a direct result of good coaching.

The second criterion of good play is that it be fair play. Soccer was designed to be played according to a set of rules. More importantly, it was meant to be played by players who respect not only the letter of the law but also the spirit of the law.

For example, tackling a player hard and tackling a player so hard and in such a manner that he or she cannot take any further part in the game are fundamentally different actions. The difference between a hard but fair tackle and a dangerous or vicious one lies in the intention of the player executing the tackle and not in the referee’s judgment, which is always retrospective.

Soccer was designed as a game of skill, not a game of brute force, and the game of soccer will only thrive in an atmosphere in which skillful, intelligent sporting play is appreciated by all who play, watch, and coach. To a person who really loves soccer, what matters most is not who wins the game but the manner in which the game is won.

Wanting to win is important, but if to win players have to commit fouls, argue, or make obscene gestures, then although those players may have won the match, to a much greater extent the game itself has lost. A typical example of such undesirable play is the so-called professional foul.

The Professional Foul

A new kind of foul has crept into soccer called the professional foul. It occurs mainly when a defender deliberately catches a ball or body checks an opponent. In most cases the foul is committed to prevent the opposition from scoring; it is called a professional foul because although the individual is penalized, the team benefits.

If nobody gets hurt, why is the professional foul considered to be such a negative influence in the game? The professional foul is wrong because it spoils the game; allowing such fouls to occur destroys the game of soccer. Soccer was designed to be played according to certa in rules and in a spirit of fair play. If these rules are deliberately violated, then the game as it was meant to be played no longer exists.

Coaches and players must accept their responsibility to the game and must work together to eliminate any form of behavior that weakens the game. Such a stance is clearly an ethical one and as such embraces the personal philosophy of each individual coach.

What Is Your Philosophy?

Consider to what extent you agree with my philosophy that the main responsibility of every coach is to develop a love for the game by encouraging play that is skillful and fair and that takes place in an enjoyable sporting environment. In considering this, you must also examine the importance of winning.

A Winning Coach

Nothing is wrong with wanting to win. The whole purpose of coaching is to improve performance and, ultimately, to improve the chances of winning.

My experience—which includes professional clubs in which winning, and job security go hand in hand and Olympic competition in which winning is a matter of fierce national pride – has shown that a coach who continually encourages and emphasizes good play is actually more likely to be a winning coach. That coach’s team will be better coached, better organized, more skillful and, most of all, more resilient in times of stress because players are happier and enjoy a better team spirit.

Anyone engaged in competition will benefit from striving to win until the last possible moment. Not to try one’s best is insulting to one’s opponent and diminishes or even destroys the game as a spectacle.

My philosophy, therefore, certainly embraces the desire to win. Indeed, it emphasizes that players should strive to win until the very last moment of the game. This philosophy does draw a very clear line between wanting to win and wanting to win at any cost.

For example, 1 reject the behavior of a coach who, in seeking to win, advocates dangerous tackling, verbally abuses players or officials, keeps a badly injured player in the game, or deliberately cheats on a player’s eligibility.

Such acts could never be admissible in my philosophy because they put winning the game before a concern for the well-being of the players and the spirit of fair play.


“Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer”

Click on the Blue Button Below for Instant Access!

Our 100% Money Back Guarantee:

If for any reason you decided within 30 days that “Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer” isn’t for you, simply notify us by email and we’ll gladly refund your money – no questions asked. That’s our Ironclad Guarantee! The risk is entirely ours! You absolutely have nothing to lose!

Confirm Subscription

Your name and email will Never be shared, sold, or given to anyone.

We keep our subscriber’s privacy sacred. We do not sell or rent your personal information to other parties. What’s more you can always unsubscribe at any time!

Warmest Regards, Coyalita Linville

Behavioral Health Rehabilitative Specialist & Drug and Alcohol Addiction Counselor

Copyright © 2021- 2024 FitnessHealthcoyalita.com All Rights Reserved Earnings DisclaimerTerms of UseContact Us

Please note. The ebook is in PDF. file format. You need an Adobe Acrobat Reader to be able to read the ebook. If you do not have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed in your computer, you can download it at http://www.adobe.com. It’s completely FREE.