Soccer Coaching Blog | Professional Soccer Coaching Advice

If at first you don’t succeed

DCMy coaching word for this week is ‘perseverance’. I heard Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson talking about the attributes that make a good coach and that was the first one he named – and having been manager of Manchester United for 25 years, he’s likely to know!
Within a few days, I had experienced why this is such an important part of a coach’s toolkit. I was trying out a new session for my Under-10s, an exercise that uses movement, coordination, passing, receiving and sprinting – you’ll see it in Soccer Coach Weekly in a couple of weeks.
I know sometimes when directing exercises with young players in front of their parents it can be a bit awkward for you, particularly if the players don’t understand immediately what it is they have to do. I ran the exercise a couple of times and it was not going well. It needed some fine tuning and a few re-run demonstrations for the players to understand what I wanted.
It was eating into my coaching time but I thought it was worth persevering with it. After 10 minutes they were still struggling but suddenly one of the players shouted “got it, Dave!” Instinctively, he showed the others how it worked. And with demonstrations from both of us, the whole squad got the hang of it. It still took time to really get things motoring, but we played the exercise for the next 20 minutes and I took notes on how to change it… how to make it easier to understand for my Soccer Coach Weekly readers.
It had worked in the end but only because I was prepared to persevere with the session, and thanks in no small part to some visual aids and a player who could help me to show the others how to do it. After the session, a coach from one of our other teams (who had caught the final 10 minutes) came up and told me what a great session it was.
Rest assured he wouldn’t have said that at the start, but as a group we persevered,

Let your big central defenders go up for attacks

dc1Watching Manchester United play Inter Milan in the Champions League, it was interesting to note the player that gave Manchester a match winning start was the big central defender Nemanja Vidic.

Not only did he keep the Inter Milan attackers at bay but he went up for the corner, lost his markers and headed the ball into the corner of the net. When Inter Milan had a similar opportunity later in the half the attacking forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic missed.

Central defenders can cause chaos at corners. You need to get them to move around or time a run into the box so the corner taker can kick the ball into the area he is running into.

I love seeing my central defenders scoring because they do such a lot of hard work at the back, that it’s nice for them when they get the glory of scoring a goal.

Here’s Vidic’s goal that did so much for a Manchester Utd team to give them the edge over Inter Milan. Finishing is so important.

click here for the Vidic goal against Inter Milan

 Soccer Skills and Drills

Watch this old Umbro soccer coaching video…. UPDATED

dc1UPDATED Anyone who loved soccer in England in the eighties and nineties had better take a look at this old Umbro soccer coaching video I have stumbled across.

It features some of the greats – Eric Cantona, Alan Shearer, Peter Beardsley, Terry Venables, Andy Cole, Gazza you name it they are all in this coaching video.

It is split into 8 sections for coaching. I didn’t learn anything from it.

UPDATE: Ok so looking at it again a couple of times I agree with all of you who have contacted me over this…. Yes you could make up a good 30 minute session of coaching from the stuff on here. And if you look beyond the Umbro advertising comments there are some good sentiments… and yes the advert at the beginning of this is good!!

See what you think:

 Soccer Skills and Drills


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