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Articles Links Research & Papers on player development

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General Ashnak
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Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

Arthur
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General Ashnak wrote:
Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
General Ashnak
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Arthur wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Don't laugh so hard, you know that there is still a majority who believe that winning at the expense of learning is how you 'develop' players :oops:

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

Arthur
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http://www.just-football.com/2011/09/study-of-english-football-part-i-how-social-cultural-aspects-impact-english-game/

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Introducing Part I of a special report on Just Football. Over the coming days our newest contributor Andreas Vou presents a comprehensive four-part study into the state of English football and the national team, encompassing society and culture, the media, youth football and the English approach to playing abroad. Background to this study can be found here. Parts II, III and IV to come.

Study of English Football - Just Football

IT is reminiscent of a grandparent telling the younger generation how things are wrong these days and that things were a lot better “back in my day”.

Realistically speaking however it probably was not better; simply people were more accustomed to the mannerisms and traditions of the day, and adapting to the new way of living and thinking is too much hassle.

Fast forward to today and imagine the same concept with international football in England. Playing styles of the game, in various countries, have remained loyal to their identities but certain aspects have altered in order to keep up with the ever-evolving game.

We have seen how the Spanish national team has gone from being ‘La Furia Roja’ (The Red Fury), an intimidating team based on physical power and aggression to ‘tiki-taka’ – dominating possession with short passes and intelligent movement – a style that saw them win the European Championships in 2008 and the World Cup last year.

Germany have always been known for their also military-level discipline. This has remained at the core of their football philosophy, yet they have added flair and intricate passing along with a host of talented young stars. Youth coaches now focus more on technique than the physical side and have effortlessly changed from the common 4-4-2 to a flexible 4-2-3-1.

Even the ultra-attacking Brazil have realized they can no longer continue to play their 4-2-4 formation from the early 50’s. For the last decade they have operated with two defensive midfielders and a well-organized back line that many old Italian sides would have been proud of, all the while remaining loyal to their samba style.

Yet England, contrary to other big footballing nations, have insisted on their outdated belief that athleticism and physical strength are the most important ingredients for success despite only bringing constant failures on the international stage. Last summer, German legend Franz Beckenbauer said that England had gone back to the 50’s with their style of play, branding it as ‘kick and rush’ where long balls are challenged for by the forwards then the midfield will linger around in hope that the second ball will fall to them.

The general public was offended by the ‘Kaiser’’s comments but he could not have been more correct. It is a style we have seen for a number of generations, but the English stubbornness leads us to feel aggravated rather than realize our mistakes. A man who did admit to this fault is one of the rare exceptions to this philosophy; Joe Cole. The most skillful Englishman of his generation spoke after the World Cup last year about how backward the style of play is at international level.

“We don’t keep the ball as well as other countries; that’s not a secret. Almost every team I have played for – including England – always want to hit the front players as early as possible. You won’t get away with that at international level. It’s about technique, keeping control of the ball, passing and moving.”

Unfortunately, Cole’s views are not echoed by many of those that teach young footballers and it is these values carried by the national team that precipitate downwards to grassroots level. A coach will scream at a youngster to “get rid of it”, “put it in the mixer” and “put your foot in” but a youth’s creativity is stamped out of him in his first steps of playing. Anything expressive is seen as a crime.

Get rid of it!

The teaching methods seemed wrong to me from the age of seven when I joined my first club in Weston-super-Mare. Regardless of individual attributes, the tall kid was a centre back, the fast kid was a winger and the one with the hardest shot was a striker. I still cringe when I remember the moans of “none of that fancy stuff” from my manager when I would do a back-heel, and even if it was in the right situation it was still regarded as wrong. Even the simple task of playing it back to the keeper or trying to pass it out of the corner was regarded as too risky, so one of the first lessons taught was to kick the ball out of play, even if we were thirty yards from the touchline.

My club manager was a team-mate’s father, followed by a policeman, and my school team boss was a science teacher. The lack of qualified coaches is a syndrome seen around a lot of the United Kingdom and a major factor as to why we remain far behind other top footballing nations.

England has 2,679 coaches holding UEFA’s A, B and Pro licenses: Spain has 23,995, Italy 29,420 and Germany 34,970. In Spain, 600 coaches hold a UEFA Pro license, 500 of which train youths. There are only 150 Pro Licence coaches in the UK and NONE of them coach youths.

The only thing the FA has done to improve these depressing statistics is launch a desperate campaign in a light-hearted theme consisting of ex-footballers and celebrities to add an extra 50,000 coaches to the existing few by the end of this year. Ambitious to say the least.

The structure is designed to fail for kids playing in leagues around the country. Not all but most play 11 vs. 11 on full sized pitches. On a pitch of that size, a winger will only come up against his opponent seven times on average if he plays the full length of the match – only seven attempts to make the right decision and learn from his mistakes to improve as a player. It is staggering to even think that a child as young as eight years old plays as a goalkeeper under full-size goalposts. To imagine what this would be like for the average adult the goals would be 3.057metres (10.029ft) high and 9.174m (30.098ft) wide; the length of the pitch would be 150.4m (165 yards) and the width 112.80m (124 yards), making the total playing surface 16,800m sq; the penalty area alone would stretch for 20.68m (23 yards).

This is the age that kids need to become familiar with the ball, learn how to pass in tight spaces, take risks, understand the game on a small scale so that when they take to the field as adults they will not be scared of passing the ball out of defense rather than hoofing it into the stands and be applauded for it.

Philosophy

Since 1999, kids in Germany have been playing 4 vs. 4 until the age of thirteen. The playing philosophy has changed from emphasising the importance of stamina and power to focusing more on developing the technical aspect of the game under the guidance of highly skilled coaches.

This need to evolve regardless of success or failure could not be more evident than with the Germans; in the 90s they reached the final of Euro ’92, won Euro ’96 and Borussia Dortmund and Schalke 04 had just won the Champions League and UEFA Cup respectively in 1997. Yet the German FA was not happy about the quantity and quality of home-grown players in the domestic league and as a result, drastic measures were taken. All across the country, 121 national talent centres were built to help 10 to 17-year-olds with technical practice and each centre would employ two full-time coaches at a cost of £9.7 million over five years.

Now Germany has its youngest ever team since 1934: Manager Joachim Löw has had more good young players to choose from than any other German coach in the last two decades. The changes that were introduced 10 years ago have paid dividends: In the last two years, Germany won the European Championship at U-17, U-19 and U-21 level with the likes of Mesut Ozil, Manuel Neuer and Thomas Mueller who have all flourished at senior level.

Spain’s former Sporting Director Fernando Hierro believes that the reason behind his country’s success in the last two years is down to the Spanish FA’s commitment to its grassroots and youth-team programs.

“When a good job is done at youth football we reap the benefits. The philosophy of Spanish football is to develop our players from grassroots with our own personality, our own way of understanding and style of football.”

And this is the most important thing – to have one’s own identity, a reference point, a model that all youngsters can follow. We need to take a wider perspective of things that looks beyond the first team. It isn’t a case of if Lampard or Gerrard can play together, or if Rooney can lead the line alone. If a philosophy of football is created in which youngsters learn to treat the ball well, pass and think fast, to add to England’s already great determination, then all players can slot into the system.

If we continue however to heap praise on players just for ‘running their socks off’ things will not improve. The future of football lies with the ball at player’s feet, producing fewer runners and more thinkers, less Joey Bartons and more Jack Wilsheres. The foreseeable future of the national team is not promising but as countries such as Spain and Germany have shown, investment in youth is definitely the way forward; otherwise we will keep on producing mediocre results on the international stage.

Coming in Part II, a look at one of the English footballer’s greatest fears.

Arthur
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http://www.just-football.com/2011/09/the-study-of-english-football-part-ii-how-moving-to-foreign-leagues-would-benefit-english-players/

Quote:
Just Football presents Part II of a series of articles by Andreas Vou looking into the state of English football at international level. In Part I we looked at how social and cultural aspects impact the English game. In Part II a look at that greatest of fears for English footballers – playing abroad.

We wonder why we are out-maneuvered, out-thought and out-played in major tournaments. After all, England taught the world how to play football, we have top class players in every position and we have the best league in the world.

It is that feeling of English superiority without any real justification behind it. Every other nation explores ways in which to adapt to the modern game but here a tendency exists to simply assume by ‘working hard’ everything will be solved. The reason why we can’t keep up with the modern game is because we are not part of it.

Study of English Football - Just Football

It is clear from the unimaginative one-dimensional football style of football the England national team plays that we need to adjust our approach. The Premier League’s intensity, speed and passion is great, very entertaining and our national players do so well in it as their attributes fit all of the league’s general requirements. But if at international level technique, tactical awareness and more thought instead of action is needed then the players representing England should be taught this too.

There needs to be a change in the culture and the best way of adopting a new culture is by immersing yourself into one, and you can only do that by living in another country, or in this case, playing in one.

At the time of writing (editor’s note – May 2011), there were only 65 English footballers playing abroad of which 43 are based in Scotland and none in any of Europe’s top leagues. Compare that with Spain, who have 127 plying their trade outside of their country in leagues such as the Premier League, Serie A and the Bundesliga.

With so few players moving out of the country one might think that Fabio Capello would have a difficult job in choosing his best 25 players for each game but statistics in fact show something very different. Out of all the players in the Premier League, only 40% are available for the English national team. By contrast, when World Cup winning coach Vicente del Bosque goes to check up on local talent at the weekends he knows that 77% of them are eligible for a call-up.

There are two reasons for this. Firstly, English players are often overpriced, making it a lot easier for Premier League managers to prefer foreign players instead. Consider that you could sign David Luiz, Rafael Van der Vaart and Javier Hernandez for almost half the price of Andy Carroll, James Milner and Joleon Lescott.

Secondly, and as a result, those good-average English players are slowly weaned out and pushed down to either the bench at their clubs or down to the lower divisions. Paradoxically the problem with the lower leagues of England is that they are too good, in the sense that most clubs are financially strong, have good facilities and offer very good wages in comparison to other nation’s lower leagues.

With all these perks in mind, there is no great need to strive to reach a top level of football. The average salary for a Championship footballer in 2006 was £195,000 a year (£3,800 a week) and has surely risen since. As a result, those that drift out of the Premier League learn certain bad habits of the lower leagues, where good football is not always a priority and the comfort of high wages make it very difficult to find motivation. In some regard the lower leagues can be described as the recycling bin, where you may become something better but you can easily end up as waste.

Many good English players in the Premier League would benefit greatly from moving abroad. It makes a player much more cultured; it improves individual attributes – if for example a player moves to Italy his tactical understanding will increase, if he moves to Spain his technical aspects will improve etc.

The player will not just benefit on the pitch but off it too. In the World Cup we saw Germany’s captain Philipp Lahm giving an interview in English then minutes later in German. In terms of life experience and cultural understanding it would greatly benefit the individual and make English players aware that there is more to the world than just what happens at home.

In terms of a similar inward-looking nature, Germany is one nation that draws comparisons with England. All of Germany’s players at the 2010 World Cup at the time were based in their own country. So why should we send some of our players abroad if Germany are getting by just fine?

First of all Germany’s youth development system is superb, and the way German clubs operate has turned full circle since 2002 when the major network ‘Kirch TV’ which funded the Bundesliga since the early 1990s collapsed, leaving the clubs in a terrible state financially. The German club’s only solution was to get rid of their highly paid average foreign players and bring up youth players from their academies. This, accompanied with a massive reorganization of the youth structure, has seen Germany produce its best generation of young players for decades, allowing their kids to win major tournaments at every youth level in recent years.

Even if by some miracle the same were to happen in England, the need to move abroad should still exist as it is an education that would do a lot of English players a world of good.

Brazil are another example. A country renowned for the most wonderful attacking players with incredible skill, flair and technique used to have the “score one more than you” philosophy, even if they won 5-3 it did not matter. But now with more sophisticated tactics, a team from this period playing against the Brazil of old would set-up accordingly to hold a deep back line and hit them on the break behind their two centre backs as their full backs would be utilised as auxiliary wingers.

Their most common starting defense of the last few years has been Julio Cesar in goal, Maicon, Andre Santos, Juan and Lucio. The pattern? All, except left-back Andre Santos, play in Italy’s Serie A and Cesar, Maicon and Lucio all play for Inter Milan. While they all have the Brazilian touch, they all know how to defend and it is no surprise therefore that they all ply their trade in a country where catenaccio, a highly defensive tactical system, was created. Thiago Silva and David Luiz, the center back pairing that will replace Lucio and Juan in time for the World Cup in their homeland three years from now are based in Italy and England respectively.

Closer to home, Fernando Torres arrived at Liverpool in 2007 from Atletico Madrid as an uncut diamond. A scorer of great goals rather than a great goalscorer. In the Premier League he had the option to either stay as he was and remain a talented but not consistently prolific striker, or adjust to the leagues’ demands and become one of the best strikers in the world. Now an all-action center forward who puts himself about, relishes the big games and the only striker I know that makes Nemanja Vidic tremble. We would not have seen the same results if he had stayed in Spain simply because that league does not require the same characteristics.

Cesc Fabregas, being a starter at Arsenal from 17 years old, could have been bullied out of English football and gone back to Spain straight away but he added dogged determination to his incredible technique, vision and passing that made him one of the Premier League’s top performers of the last five years.

English players such as Glen Johnson, Michael Carrick and Adam Johnson are perhaps not as valued here but have attributes that would be much appreciated in Italy, Spain or Germany. They could all play at a high level abroad and be seen in a different light to English fans and to the national coach. Their technical ability would be more evident in other leagues that hold more value in this asset as opposed to the hustle and bustle of the Premier League.

The opportunity to compete for honours in major competitions could also be presented to players moving abroad from clubs outside England’s top bracket. Leighton Baines for example was linked to Bayern Munich earlier this season and if I was his advisor I would have told him to jump at the chance. It is time for English players to break out of their comfort zones and take more fearless risks in the pursuit of becoming winners.

Up next in Part III, we take a look at the role of the media and its influence in shaping the landscape of English football.

tjwhalan
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I've always said a greater understanding of the game by junior coaches is first and foremost the prioroty in youth development, but I am simply refering to knowing the game as a fan of the game and perhaps doing a community course or two.
Are all these coaches that this article refers to paid coaches or have they went out and done their pro licenses at their own expense?
If so I cant see the lowest advanced pathway license in England costing the coach $3000 out of his own pocket. Does anyone else think the pricing of these courses is just elliminating a core group of would be coaches. I would love to further my coaching skills and apply that to teaching the kids that may one day play professionally in Australia.
Surely the FFA should be looking to get as many through the course as possible?
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Quote:


How Dutch seeds can help England's grassroots youth football to grow
Rich in facilities and not obsessed with winning, William Gaillard was right to say Holland can show England the way

Jamie Jackson
The Guardian, Thursday 28 April 2011 19.52 BST

In Holland the key ethos is that all age groups should play in a 4-3-3 formation with the emphasis on freedom of expression and fun coaching sessions. Photograph: Rob De Jong
From the Netherlands has sprung Johan Cruyff, Marco van Basten, Ruud Gullit, Dennis Bergkamp and Total Football. Since 2002 it has also been the home of an integrated professional and amateur network of 2,700 clubs that this week Uefa stated should be the model that English football adopts if it is ever to replicate the kind of success enjoyed by Dutch players and teams.

Whereas Cruyff and his compatriots have helped Holland to three World Cup finals and victory at Euro 88, England have contested only one World Cup and two European Championship semi-finals since Bobby Moore lifted the Jules Rimet trophy 45 years ago. This week William Gaillard, the adviser to Uefa's president, Michel Platini, identified English football's factional nature and lack of significant funding as the fault lines that blight the sport here.

Gaillard told a parliamentary select committee that the Football Association should look to the Netherlands if England is ever going to address the malaise in player development. He said: "There is no doubt that turf wars have damaged English football, and the FA is probably in a weaker spot than any other in Europe. Holland is an excellent grassroots model."

A tour around amateur clubs in the Amsterdam area showed the stark difference in facilities between the Netherlands and England. Clubs such as ASV Arsenal, Sporting Martinus, SC Buitenveldert, Swift, AFC, SV Bijlmer and Legmeervogels boast facilities that always include floodlit grass and artificial turf pitches, dedicated medical centres, warm changing rooms, hot showers, spacious clubhouses and adequate car parking and bicycle ports – all of which placed the clubs at the centre of their local communities.

Their structure is also more professional than amateur. Dennis van Soest, who runs the commercial affairs of Legmeervogels, says: "Legmeer has 1,250 members. The owners are the members. Control and management is executed by the board of directors, which consists of 10 persons, of which five are part of the daily board. We have a chairman who is responsible for the youth department.

"Daily maintenance is done by our facilities' managers. We have around 200 active volunteers and 120 companies that sponsor our association. Membership costs on average €180 [£160] per year."

Broadly, the Dutch model that allows all this has been in place for nine years. Louis van Gaal, then the national coach, integrated the sport across six regions on behalf of the Dutch FA, the KNVB. This pyramid consists of the 2,700 clubs – of which 36 are professional – that are governed by a single body, the KNVB, with the amateur game benefiting from €1bn a year of investment.

The KNVB has around 1.2 million members (7% of the Dutch population), with local authorities contributing 90% of the €1bn investment and the government the remainder. English football's ongoing dispute between the FA, the Premier League and the Football League has resulted in inferior funding for the amateur game, in comparison to the Netherlands.

In 2000 the Football Foundation stated that the FA would contribute £20m per annum to grassroots football in England. Yet by last year the FA's contribution was only £12m. The Premier League contributes £43.4m, less than 5% of its latest £3.1bn TV rights deal.

In the Netherlands the key ethos is that all age-group teams should play 4-3-3 and that coaching sessions should be fun, with individuality allowed whether players are future stars of Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and FC Twente or destined to remain in the grassroots game. Competitive youth football is also played between professional and amateur clubs, which means standards between the sport's two strands are closer.

In England winning, not enjoyment, has traditionally been the end game. And it would be unheard of for a youth side from Manchester United, Chelsea or Liverpool to play against, say, an equivalent team from the Civil Service or Enfield Old Grammarians.

Bryan Roy, the former Nottingham Forest and Holland forward, is a coach at the Jong Ajax academy, which is a renowned conveyer belt of fresh talent. He confirms the closer dynamic between the amateur and professional game. "Until the age of 14 our teams from professional clubs still play against teams from amateur clubs," he says. "Holland's overall football philosophy is to always focus on ball possession to create opportunities. This is also true at amateur clubs. In the youth they always think in an attacking way."

In 2008 one enlightened English father, Steve Lawrence, decided to harness the Dutch vision by moving his family to Amsterdam so that his then 16-year-old son, Jamie, could improve his development there, after he had formerly been with Arsenal and Queens Park Rangers. Jamie began at HFC Haarlem, then a professional club, and is now at Ajax. His father was the architect of the original feasibility study and master plan for the London 2012 Olympic Games.

He submitted written evidence to the same parliamentary select committee that Gaillard addressed. "I've visited about 60 or 70 amateur football clubs [in the Netherlands]. On average they have around €3-4m of facilities [in] land and buildings. That's about €10bn in total. Effectively, they're all better than the standard academies in England so Holland has 2,700 academies. It's no surprise that Holland is No2 in the Fifa world rankings."

While the two nations have an almost identical population density, they are on very different points on the development scale. Roy states that Holland is intent on becoming more successful on the field. "We tend to focus more on tactics instead of technical improvements – that's the next step," he says.

English football's dream is to have only this concern.

tjwhalan
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Quote:


Our kids train half as much as those in Europe. We can not afford to waste a training sessions on isolated, non football conditioning exercises. In Holland players between 10 – 15 only use a ball at training.



If thats true, thats a big diffrence right there in standards of our kids to forigners even with better coaches,90% of teams in Australia aged 10-16 only train once a week. And the short seasons too I think are a problem with no real effort for the most parts of organising competitive junior Summer comperitions. I'd assume in Europe the majority of Junior Seasons would last longer?
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tjwhalan wrote:
Quote:


Our kids train half as much as those in Europe. We can not afford to waste a training sessions on isolated, non football conditioning exercises. In Holland players between 10 – 15 only use a ball at training.



If thats true, thats a big diffrence right there in standards of our kids to forigners even with better coaches,90% of teams in Australia aged 10-16 only train once a week. And the short seasons too I think are a problem with no real effort for the most parts of organising competitive junior Summer comperitions. I'd assume in Europe the majority of Junior Seasons would last longer?




In Holland they have all training with a ball for all levels, apart from elite professional.
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Decentric wrote:
tjwhalan wrote:
Quote:


Our kids train half as much as those in Europe. We can not afford to waste a training sessions on isolated, non football conditioning exercises. In Holland players between 10 – 15 only use a ball at training.



If thats true, thats a big diffrence right there in standards of our kids to forigners even with better coaches,90% of teams in Australia aged 10-16 only train once a week. And the short seasons too I think are a problem with no real effort for the most parts of organising competitive junior Summer comperitions. I'd assume in Europe the majority of Junior Seasons would last longer?




In Holland they have all training with a ball for all levels, apart from elite professional.


Yeah I was commenting more on the ammount of training. I think most Australian ameature coaches understand that the ball has to be used as much as possible, though for the majority there is still that metality amongst us that fitness can only be achieved without a ball.
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Post-season futsal and 6 a side the kids play these days is helping with the problem of the short season. In our region (ESFA) over half the juniors go on to play these in Sept - Feb.
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General Ashnak wrote:
Arthur wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Don't laugh so hard, you know that there is still a majority who believe that winning at the expense of learning is how you 'develop' players :oops:
And it's up to us to keep changing it. It will come but a culture change isn't easy to implement.
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thupercoach wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Arthur wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Don't laugh so hard, you know that there is still a majority who believe that winning at the expense of learning is how you 'develop' players :oops:
And it's up to us to keep changing it. It will come but a culture change isn't easy to implement.


Definitely movng in the right direction......Joeys are living proof. :lol:

Edited by judy free: 2/10/2012 08:58:12 PM
General Ashnak
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Judy Free wrote:
thupercoach wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Arthur wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Thank you for the sig quote Arthur =d>



:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Don't laugh so hard, you know that there is still a majority who believe that winning at the expense of learning is how you 'develop' players :oops:
And it's up to us to keep changing it. It will come but a culture change isn't easy to implement.


Definitely movng in the right direction......Joeys are living proof. :lol:

Edited by judy free: 2/10/2012 08:58:12 PM

Do you actually read any of my comments or do you just make assumptions?

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

Arthur
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One of the better articles around and I have to congratulate US Soccer for they are the ones that seem to have the most literature, articles, books and DVD's about the game.

I think it should be mandatory for Han Berger and the State Coaching Directors to be writing at least one poublished article every year.

Quote:


Reviving the pickup gameSam Snow - US Youth Soccer's Director of Coaching Education
SoccerAmerica's Youth Soccer Insider, Sept. 27, 2007

Whether you call it street soccer, a sandlot game, a kick-about or a pickup game -- this is the way that millions upon millions over many decades have learned to play soccer.

While the pickup game has not disappeared in the USA, it is not used in soccer as it could be. There are millions of kids playing soccer in our country, so why do we not see pickup games at every turn?

There can be many reasons why so few pickup games happen in youth soccer. They include a sedentary lifestyle, the vacant lot doesn't exist any longer, even the design of neighborhoods nowadays means there is little or no yard on which to play, parents are reluctant to let their kids play away from home without adult supervision, soccer facilities are closed except for scheduled events, or the kids simply don't know how to organize a game.

There can be more reasons and some of the ones I've noted are beyond the direct control of most soccer coaches. But the one that is the most disturbing to me is that kids don't know how to organize their own games. How has it come to pass that kids can't throw down something to mark goals, pick teams and play?

Well part of the answer is that we coaches have taken the game away from the youngsters. We over-coach and we over-organize. Coaches, parents and administrators need to take a step back and give the game back to the players.

In the 1970s and the 1980s, coaches had to be a focal point of most soccer experiences since so many of the kids were just then being introduced to the game. Unlike today, there were very few televised soccer matches, and in many communities none at all.

Professional and college team were not nearly as prevalent as today, so a chance for a kid to go watch adults play the game was few and far between.

Even to watch a World Cup match you had to go to a theater for closed-circuit TV to see a game. Consequently the coach had to demonstrate all of the ball skills, show players how to position themselves on the field and teach the rules.

While that's still true to an extent today, the models of how to play the game for a child to see are many. The coach no longer needs to be at the center of a novice's soccer experience. Now keep in mind that coaches are not alone in the need to give the game back to the players.

Our organization has been a double-edged sword for American soccer. The ability to organize has created teams, clubs and leagues. It has created from nothing soccer complexes that dot the land and in some cases are of quite high quality.

The organization has provided for coaching and referee education that is very good. The game has grown tremendously over the last 35 years on the backs of volunteers for the most part.

But the organization has a down side too. We adults meddle too much in the kids' soccer world. We plan everything! From uniforms for U6 players to select teams at U10, the adults are too involved. The kids don't know how to organize a pickup game because we have never let them.

OK, so good organization is an American trait. But what might be driving the compulsion to infiltrate adult organization into child's play?

As a sports nation we suffer from the "too much too soon" syndrome. Many adults involved in youth soccer want so badly to achieve success (superficially measured by the won/loss record and number of trophies collected) that they are bound to treat children as miniature adults. Unfortunately it is the adults who lack the patience to let the game grow within the child at its own pace.

In the National Youth License coaching course of the National Coaching Schools the idea of street soccer is presented. This is a way for the club to begin to give the game back to its rightful owners, the players.

The club provides the fields and supervision for safety (but no coaching) to let the kids show up and play pick up games. Granted it's not as spontaneous as a neighborhood game, but it does provide a chance to play without referees, without coaches and without spectators.

This means the kids are free to learn how to organize themselves, solve disputes, become leaders, rule their own game, experiment with new skills, make new friends and play without the burden of results.

If the club wants to provide an even better fun-filled learning environment, then put out different types of balls to use in some of the games, encourage the kids to set up fields of different sizes, allow mixed age groups to play together and even co-ed games.

The kids have a lot they can learn from each other. After all, players learning from players has produced Michele Akers, Pele, Johan Cruyff and many other world-class players. That same unencumbered environment has produced the multitudes who support the game.

When we adults give the game back to the players, in some small measure we are most likely to keep more players in the game for all of their lives and then the odds improve for the USA to produce its share of world class players.

Youth soccer now lives in the culture it created over the last 30 years. Will we evolve?


Arthur
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Quote:


The Possession Football Mindset
0 0 0 0 New

In India, the influence of British culture is evident. There are homes that are built like colonial palaces, laws that still exist from the time we let a company decide the country's fate and football that is a lot of "grunt" for very little "go".

For most football coaches, especially at the school level, the job is just a job. There are no "real" responsibilities, a few matches need to be won but in the end, education is limited to studies and football coaches can get away with murder!

That's where the traditional English philosophy meets the average Indian football coach – the part where the ball is booted up the pitch. For years now, countries have realised that the English format of playing "fast-football" isn't really very effective.

Everyone talks about the pace of the Premier League, but few talk of the technical capabilities of their players. The simple introduction of an Andres Villas-Boas led tactical & technical style of football brought an entire team crumbling down. We all know how Chelsea eventually won the UEFA Champions League so let's not get into that.

Which brings us to one simple point – what do we, as coaches, do that teaches our players to have fun and enjoy the game they love so much? How about holding onto the ball – how's that for a simple starting point?

DEVELOPING A CULTURE
Teaching a child to play football isn't just about teaching them technical skills, it is about instilling a culture in them. The way a country plays football is a cultural signature in itself. These signatures change, but not overnight!

The Dutch play beautiful technical football while the Brazilians take individual flair to a whole new level. That said, the 2010 World Cup had a physical Dutch side while the Brazilians, if anything, were amongst the dullest sides in the competition.

The Italians have been tactically superior for ages while Argentina is always brilliant in attack but shaky at the back.

This culture runs through clubs as well – Real Madrid are always playing attractive football and FC Barcelona have developed their new signature style. Bayern Munchen have always been quite adventurous while Arsenal have, quite recently, developed their own version of beautiful football.

Every team has a style and a philosophy and that pattern continues because of the decisions the team takes. Players are chosen to fit that philosophy; coaches are picked to run that pattern of play; in fact, even the accountants, marketing personnel and other members of staff are picked to further that very philosophy!

For most teams, this culture comes naturally because football is a part of their life. For others, it's a process of trying to adopt a style of play that closely matches their philosophy or culture.

ANTI-POSSESSION PHILOSOPHY
The moment you give the ball more importance than the players, you start putting more emphasis on technical skill than strength and a player's/team's smart-work becomes more important than the hard-work of another.

As FC Barcelona and the Spanish national team have shown, keeping possession of the ball guarantees a low loss-percentage. While Spain didn't exactly blow the world away, with their goal pile-up, at the 2010 World Cup, their 7 goals were all-important when it came to winning six of their seven games.

Technical football mastered over strength and physical superiority, the only way for players like Xavi and Andres Iniesta to be rated amongst the best in the world.

However, creating such technically-advanced players requires long-term commitment, one that ensures gradual but consistent shift towards a technical style of possession football.

However, before you can do that, understanding the football community at the grassroots' level will help you grasp expectations and understand their definition of what they consider "beautiful football". This is extremely important if you are going to try and create a philosophy of football that deals with holding onto the ball as a team.

The more you look around academies, the more you find coaches directing players to move the ball faster up the pitch. How many times have you seen them ask defenders to stay back and not help out in attack?

The quality of the pass or the decision-making on the pitch is never considered inferior as long as the team doesn't lose. Heaven forbid should the team lose – the coach would turn into a nightmare!

This philosophy can be, somewhat, directly blamed on the ever-popular Premier League that promotes booting the ball up the pitch and having strikers chasing the ball like headless chickens. Target-men are still popular while brute strength overpowers the mere concept of intelligence, keeping it well outside the stadium gates.

This is also an example of poor investment in youth coaching!

POSSESSION PHILOSOPHY
If you want your players to play possession football, patience is the most important thing you need. If you are interested in player development, you will end up getting kids to enjoy the game and the biggest problem in youth football, the drop-out rate, will reduce.

The dance between tactics and player technique has always been fascinating in football. Without strong technical players, i.e. players who have great grasp of the techniques of the game, you cannot employ a good tactical structure. Each is empty without the other, and each cannot be ignored.

Producing players who have great individual and team-based technique; who are capable of constructing attacks rather than hitting & hoping; who are capable of playing intelligently in defence, and can keep possession of the ball will automatically bring those favourable results you need.

Look at the countries that create technically superior football players at the youth level and you will find the answer to what kind of a team wins a world cup. Which countries have a culture of training their players in the technical art of the game?

The answer – Brazil, Argentina, Italy and Germany!

How many World Cups do each of these countries have? Brazil has 5; Italy has 4, Germany has 3 and Argentina has 2. Spain, which recently switched over to this philosophy won their first title ever, but that was also due to the training policy at a handful of clubs, not the entire country, which had most of the players in the first team.

France, with their technically gifted side, went on to win the World and European Cup. The tactically brilliant Dutch were technically gifted too, reaching two consecutive World Cup finals in 1974 and 1978.

However, they were beaten by a technically superior side in West Germany (1974) and Argentina (1978). Tactically, the Dutch were better, but on an individual basis, both West Germany and Argentina had a greater number of technically-gifted players than the Dutch.

THE STARTING POINT
The first thing we need to do, when trying to convert the philosophy or culture of the game, is to identify the need to do so. Our national team, the clubs below it and the local teams will play the kind of football that is bred through our culture. At the moment, possession and technical skill are almost non-existent.

What we need to do is, at the youth level, promote the concept of keeping the ball on the floor and passing/receiving it with good technique. Short passes ensure that players need to be closer to each other, thereby creating support-options almost automatically.

If your team has more players, than the opposition, within 20 feet of the ball, there are more passing options for your player in possession; which means winning possession is harder for the opposition – it's that simple!

The importance of a long-pass should never be undermined but its purpose should be focussed on. There's a simple way of picking a long-ball option – when playing the long ball, just ask your players to think whether their pass would be in response to a team-mate's movement or would they expect the team-mate to move in response to the pass?

The chances of successfully completing a long-pass, provided the technique, direction and speed is correct, increases exponentially if the pass is made in response to a player's movement.

An aerial ball, if used, needs to be directly hit towards the player in question.

A common-ball or a 50-50 ball, between your team-mate and an opposing player, means that the time required to track & control the ball, before passing it on, is reduced. Hitting into space and expecting a team-mate to chase it down should never be picked as an option to start a move, unless of course it is a last-ditch defensive clearance.

Goalkeepers and defenders should be encouraged to pass the ball out of defence. Even in goal-kicks, if you get your players into the habit of passing it out from the back, in practice, they will be much more confident to do so in games. Training is where players make mistakes and correct them. This helps improve their confidence levels and, thus, your team's ability to maintain possession.

To maintain possession, players need to be extremely comfortable with the ball at their feet. They should not worry about having opposition breathing down their neck because shielding the ball or playing with their heads up, until they find a team-mate, should come naturally to them. Dribbling or passing the ball should be second-nature, something that your training sessions need to encourage.

When you give your players the freedom to express themselves at the youth level, you end up creating players who are more confident about their abilities at the highest level. Every player is different and understanding their capabilities & limitations is your responsibility. Don't enforce a particular pattern or playing style on a player. That means, if your player's a "passer", don't force them to dribble like some other player on the team.

Possession of the football allows you to dictate the pace of the game. It allows you to decide when you want to attack and when you want to wait for a better opportunity. Possession helps you pull opposition players out of their places, create space on the pitch and move the game in the direction you want.

Not just that, it allows you to put more people into attack, overload your opposition with numbers and break down even the most stubborn defences in the process.

GETTING THERE
This is something that most coaches know about but the actual implementation leaves a lot to be desired. 1v1 sessions are key in teaching, practicing and refining technique; small sided games work to give each player anywhere between 500 to 1,000 touches in each session – another important aspect!

The more time players spend with the ball, the more comfortable they get with it. However, it is the coach's job to ensure that these touches on the ball are meaningful, in terms of real-match situations.

Building awareness in players, when in possession, is extremely important, as is the process of helping them read the game to make their own decisions. This kind of knowledge only comes through spending time on the playing field, something that coaches will only be able to encourage if children are having fun on the pitch.

So, as a coach, your philosophy needs to be one where the kids have fun, while learning all the techniques related to the game. One- or two-touch passing; moving the ball around quickly; varying & controlling the pace of the game; triangle-passing; reading the game; creating support options to the side and to the front & back, amongst other similar aspects, are all signs that your coaching strategy is heading down the right path.

The joy of playing football comes from playing with the ball and touching it with the feet. Football isn't about running behind the ball or chasing someone who has it. It is about keeping it at your feet, passing it to a team-mate and scoring a goal to win the game. If you can master the art of training your team in these simple aspects, then you've got yourself a winning formula!


tjwhalan
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Could sum it up with allowing players more touches in training.
It's really upto the clubs at grassroots and Technical Directors to ensure this happens. It's great to have parents take up the role of coach, but a simple pre-season meeting between all the coaches in the club or all coaches in the age group with the associations TD, discussing proper conduct and basic football philosophy (depending on the age group.)
We have had our nation curriculum in place for 5 years now, its time we stopped seeing 7 year olds waiting in line for 1/2 the training session.
Arthur
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Quote:
   The French Way
THE FRENCH WAY
by Gordon Miller, VYSA Technical Director

It's still hard to believe that France was knocked out of the 2002 World Cup in the first round and without ever scoring a goal. They upset the Brazilians four years ago to win their first ever World Championship, then followed up two years later with a victorious performance in the Euro 2000 Championships. They were overwhelmingly predicted to be one of the favorites. How can they have gone from first to worst in two short years? Should we now discount their ways and claim that they have got it all wrong? I don't think so. Soccer pundits will examine, review and dissect everything about what France did and didn't do better than I could ever attempt. Some will point to the injuries they had. Others will point to the fact that they haven't played a meaningful game in four years (previous champions get an automatic inclusion into the next World Cup) and haven't had the luxury of toughening up the squad through having to qualify. Yet others may say that too many lucrative deals, TV appearances and swollen heads have taken away the collective hunger.

Even though things went wrong for the defending Champions this time around, we can't discount the fact that their system produces some of the best players in the world. They have hugely talented technical players strewn throughout the best leagues in Europe. In fact, their current crop reads like a who's who in the world of elite soccer players. Three of France's finest finished first, or tied for first, in scoring in three separate professional leagues. And these leagues aren't exactly pushovers on the world stage; David Trezeguet of Juventus led the prestigious Italian Serie A. Thierry Henry of Arsenal topped the English Premier League, and Djibril Cisse of Auxerre finished first in the French League. Together they combined for over 100 goals during the 2001-02 season. Now, throw-in Patrick Vieria and Robert Pires of Arsenal, Bixente Lizarazu of Bayern Munich, and mix them with twice world footballer of the year Zinedine Zidane of Real Madrid, and you have some of the most skillful players that any nation would be hard pressed to duplicate.

While the French were not victorious in this particular campaign, we must always take a look at successful soccer nations and learn from what they do and how they do it. We are still developing successful soccer programs in the US that work and we must be willing to learn from any and all countries that can help further that goal. I don't believe that we can take one country's successful blueprint and implement it, verbatim, here. We must always consider our own set of unique circumstances, such as geographical qualities, youth structures, political agendas, etc., and then implement what works best for us. But, perhaps there are other aspects and details that can be gleaned in order to help propel our country and our state forward in the development of youth soccer players.


The French Federation of Football (Soccer) is structured as follows:
The French National Technical Staff consists of 14 full time people. All the coaches are ex-pro players with backgrounds in education and they all maintain the highest coaching certification available in France and Europe.
France is divided into 21 regions; each one of these regions has a Technical Director who oversees all football programs, mainly youth development. All the Directors report directly to the National Technical Director-Mr. Aime Jacquet.


The FFF has a number of key objectives that define their player development:
Their main objective is coaching development. They believe that without top-level educators, France will not be able to produce quality players.
The second objective is player identification. They believe that they must have soccer experts who have been trained to identify the characteristics of youth talent.
The third objective is the youth. From ages 6 to 11, it's called the "learning stage and fun football." At these ages small-sided games are emphasized in order to maximize touches on the ball. From ages 12 to 16, it's called the "technical stage", where the best players will train 2 hours a day on technique. Once a player reaches 15 he is trained for a specific position. Prior to that, there is no positional training. The federation feels that the individuals must have a lot of freedom to express themselves.
The absolute, number one requirement in France is good technique. Players must have the skills to play quickly and creatively. Ball mastery, the ability to pass and control, is stressed. French coaches also look for players with personality: players who think of their teammates, and who have a team spirit as well as fighting spirit. Physical play is not stressed as the players are maturing at different rates. They also believe that one game a week is enough and that the body breaks down by playing too many matches. The French believe that the learning takes place through plenty of repetitions in training as well as quality feedback from trained coaches. If a player does not have good touch with both feet, he will waste time with his head down, worrying about the ball, and the moment is lost. This thinking is central to French soccer philosophy. The size and strength of potential players is not considered important until they are into their late teens. This has been a long standing criticism of American soccer, where there has been too much emphasis on a youngster's physique and not enough on technique.

There is no focus on goalkeeping training before the age of 13. After this, individual clubs begin selective training with the emphasis on the development of foot skills, not the use of hands. It is important first that the goalkeepers are good field players.

The French have had great success in producing winning teams and highly skilled players. And, they seem to have a working, well thought-out formula in place to continue to do so in the future. Do our country, our state and our clubs have a similar plan or comprehensive structure in place? In looking at their structure we realize the challenges that lie ahead of us on the Virginia scene. But, by examining successful programs we can continue to learn and move forward.

tjwhalan
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Another great find Arthur, relevant to our game with the US at a similar development stage in 2002 as we are now, though we are 5 years into our national curriculum.
Quote:
France is divided into 21 regions; each one of these regions has a Technical Director who oversees all football programs, mainly youth development. All the Directors report directly to the National Technical Director-Mr. Aime Jacquet.


Here In theory I believe we have the geographical advantage. With 7 states and one TD for each state reporting to the National TD, the National TD can focus more efficiently then 21:1 in France.

Also I like the idea of no specific positioning or Goalkeeping training till they have developed technically, very contrasting of our current system.
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Good one I read a few weeks ago.

"Individualism, or lack of it."
Quote:

I am no Mourinho or Guardiola, but after undergoing the L1 and L2 Coach Ed courses together with the Licence Holders Course organised by Premier Skills, I look back at my first three years as a football educator before this moment and realise how false my sessions used to be! It has also opened my eyes a lot to the problems I see with coaching in Malta:





I see many “know­-it-­alls” and ex-­footballers who talk, talk, talk, who believe they can coach purely because of their position or playing reputation, but who quiet frankly, can’t and don’t! I see alot of coaches that focus on their own personal success and results when they should be focusing on developing players – It’s all about how many games they`ve won! I see a lot of coaches that do it as a hobby or as a side job to earn extra pocket money, without realising how delicate their role is! What most of the coaches have in common is that they don’t understand that coaching isn’t easy!

We as coaches are responsible for a childs dream – every young kid wants to become a professional footballer! A few percentage end up making it, but that shouldnt stop all good kids becoming the best they can be. The potential in ANY child is tremendous – and one can only obtain the best out of them with the right coaching!

The Malta Football Association, since the new President Norman Darmanin Demajo was elected 2 seasons ago, has strived to improve the level of Maltese football. They provided70% of clubs with new training facilities, they have improved the running organisation of football events and have worked closer to the Youth FA (association responsible for youth football on the island), and provided and distributed more funds for the academies. They kicked off an ambitious project with the 1998 age group – the MFA selected boys to take part in an ongoing program that consists of two training sessions and a full days training every week. Furthermore, they reduced the Coach Edu coaching courses fee from the ridicilous fees they were at. All this sounds like great development on such a small island with limited resources………BUT have they improved the coaching in order to develop better players? Are the sessions realistic to the game? Are all the players constantly involved or are they lining up in ques waiting for turns? Do the sessions keep the players on their toes by having them make decisions on time and space throughout?

Everyone in Malta boasts that they are teaching their team the ‘Barcelona way’ – and all you see while going around sessions is control and pass or one touch football. It is a false belief that Barcelona play one or two touch football – they do use it when necessary, but not because the coach tells them play one/two touch because they have recognised that is the right option! How many times do you see Pique running out with the ball from the back and overloading in midfield, or Xavi and Iniesta twisting and turning through midfield. The potential here in Malta is big for such a small island, however, coaches remove that little bit of brilliance which the kid can offer when expressing himself by forcing them to play one and two touch. I am forever seeing players giving the ball away because they try play one touch when they actually had the time and space to turn and keep the ball that little bit longer, and create something out of it. Football is a team game, but you need an individual’s piece of magic to sometimes make things happen, that’s why no matter how off Barcelona are on the day, you just know that if Xavi, Iniesta or Messi create that extra metre of space and take full advantage of it, they will punish you. That’s why it is our duty as coaches to let the show their individualism and deliver real sessions and exercises related to the game rather than us controlling them as if they’re PlayStation players. Our coaching must give players the tools which will help their decision making in the game.

I am proud in saying that since having met Roger and Sam in England and been on the Premier Skills courses, my coaching has improved tremendously, and the improvement of every kid, no matter the age and ability has been phenomenal. It was these fantastic results which made me obliged to pass on this to other maltese coaches and introduce Premier Skills Practice Play methodology into my Footy4U Football School.

Having said all this about Malta, what worries me is that after having visited a number of professional academies in Europe, there appears to be the same problem! And with a lot of our boys going up on trial and even on the verge of signing, I ask myself if they will remain good players or even make the step up and become great players if they enter this system?
http://keeptheball.wordpress.com/2012/09/13/individualism-or-the-lack-of-it/#more-948

Arthur
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Nice article TJ Keeptheball blog is an excellent source of intersting articles.

I particularly like these comments;

Quote:
I see many “know­-it-­alls” and ex-­footballers who talk, talk, talk, who believe they can coach purely because of their position or playing reputation, but who quiet frankly, can’t and don’t! I see alot of coaches that focus on their own personal success and results when they should be focusing on developing players – It’s all about how many games they`ve won! I see a lot of coaches that do it as a hobby or as a side job to earn extra pocket money, without realising how delicate their role is! What most of the coaches have in common is that they don’t understand that coaching isn’t easy!


and this;

Quote:
Everyone in Malta boasts that they are teaching their team the ‘Barcelona way’ – and all you see while going around sessions is control and pass or one touch football. It is a false belief that Barcelona play one or two touch football – they do use it when necessary, but not because the coach tells them play one/two touch because they have recognised that is the right option! How many times do you see Pique running out with the ball from the back and overloading in midfield, or Xavi and Iniesta twisting and turning through midfield. The potential here in Malta is big for such a small island, however, coaches remove that little bit of brilliance which the kid can offer


So true!
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Arthur wrote:
Nice article TJ Keeptheball blog is an excellent source of intersting articles.

I particularly like these comments;

Quote:
I see many “know­-it-­alls” and ex-­footballers who talk, talk, talk, who believe they can coach purely because of their position or playing reputation, but who quiet frankly, can’t and don’t! I see alot of coaches that focus on their own personal success and results when they should be focusing on developing players – It’s all about how many games they`ve won! I see a lot of coaches that do it as a hobby or as a side job to earn extra pocket money, without realising how delicate their role is! What most of the coaches have in common is that they don’t understand that coaching isn’t easy!


and this;

Quote:
Everyone in Malta boasts that they are teaching their team the ‘Barcelona way’ – and all you see while going around sessions is control and pass or one touch football. It is a false belief that Barcelona play one or two touch football – they do use it when necessary, but not because the coach tells them play one/two touch because they have recognised that is the right option! How many times do you see Pique running out with the ball from the back and overloading in midfield, or Xavi and Iniesta twisting and turning through midfield. The potential here in Malta is big for such a small island, however, coaches remove that little bit of brilliance which the kid can offer


So true!


It's hard to blame junior coaches too with the media totally obsessed with one touch, possession football.
We want kids to have as many touches on the ball as possible yet we want to promote one touch football. It's really something the FFA coaching licenses are quite unclear about also.

Arthur
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TJ I don't think many people in Australia understand the concept of the Barcelona and how it works.

It even gets down to the point of how to recieve the ball and which foot (back or front) and what direction the first lateral touch should be used in varying situations.


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Also this Performance section has provided me with a lot of ideas and confidence to re-enter the coaching ranks.

While Decentrics Community Football Programme is something that has a wider merit for the game and got me to look at issues more latraley.

For example the CLub my kids were with was a particapatory Club, but what annoyed me was I saw kids go through U8 to U11 and they still couldn't pass a ball properly let alone control it.

I looked at this as a massive failure for the Club and those involved.

While our talented players would pack up and leave to so called elite clubs because we couldn't stimulate them. (Many regretted the regimented training)
We had pockets of success depending on which volunteer coach was coach but invariably when that father left the team collapsed.
While I sent my kids to a private coach to improve their skill levels and in the off season they played futsal.

Decentrics approach is what we need more of to give Particapatory Clubs a boost and better understanding of modern and adavanced methodology that can even short term effects on childrens level of play.
Open type sessions that educate the player and parent.

General Ashnak
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Arthur wrote:
Also this Performance section has provided me with a lot of ideas and confidence to re-enter the coaching ranks.

While Decentrics Community Football Programme is something that has a wider merit for the game and got me to look at issues more latraley.

For example the CLub my kids were with was a particapatory Club, but what annoyed me was I saw kids go through U8 to U11 and they still couldn't pass a ball properly let alone control it.

I looked at this as a massive failure for the Club and those involved.

While our talented players would pack up and leave to so called elite clubs because we couldn't stimulate them. (Many regretted the regimented training)
We had pockets of success depending on which volunteer coach was coach but invariably when that father left the team collapsed.
While I sent my kids to a private coach to improve their skill levels and in the off season they played futsal.

Decentrics approach is what we need more of to give Particapatory Clubs a boost and better understanding of modern and adavanced methodology that can even short term effects on childrens level of play.
Open type sessions that educate the player and parent.

Whole of system approach, something Australians traditionally resists pig headedly with every ounce of their being.

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

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Jesus H. :oops:

Navel gazers.
General Ashnak
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Judy Free wrote:
Jesus H. :oops:

Navel gazers.

When are you getting back into coaching?

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

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General Ashnak wrote:
Judy Free wrote:
Jesus H. :oops:

Navel gazers.

When are you getting back into coaching?


Why do you ask?
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Judy Free wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Judy Free wrote:
Jesus H. :oops:

Navel gazers.

When are you getting back into coaching?


Why do you ask?

Curiosity, I may give you stick but you can take it and I am genuinely interested if you are.

The thing about football - the important thing about football - is its not just about football.
- Sir Terry Pratchett in Unseen Academicals
For pro/rel in Australia across the entire pyramid, the removal of artificial impediments to the development of the game and its players.
On sabbatical Youth Coach and formerly part of The Cove FC

Judy Free
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General Ashnak wrote:
Judy Free wrote:
General Ashnak wrote:
Judy Free wrote:
Jesus H. :oops:

Navel gazers.

When are you getting back into coaching?


Why do you ask?

Curiosity, I may give you stick but you can take it and I am genuinely interested if you are.


Not in my immediate plans, old mate.

Quite happy sniping from the sidelines......bringing some accountability where it is most needed. ;)
GO


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