Soccer Coaching Blog | Professional Soccer Coaching Advice

Dealing with a sulking substitute and his parents

dave clarkeSubstitutes seem to be causing a lot of trouble to the coaches I have spoken to during our recent monthly meetings. What I hope to see is that every player starts a certain number of games and that it is not the same few players who start on the subs bench every match.

At my club we have worked it so that we have three teams in our age groups with one team playing friendlies and the other two teams matches. In this way we can spread players out and make sure everyone is starting matches to give each player a chance of developing during the season.

The problem is however much we try to make sure players are not always made sub there are still some players (and their parents) who do not like being substituted during the game.

This week we were playing on a heavy pitch and I wanted to change players as they got tired. So at half time I explain to one of our more advanced dribblers that I wanted him to sit out for the first five minutes of the second half and to watch how the defenders were sitting deep. I wanted him to work out for himself how he could exploit that situation.

“That’s a strange decision,” I heard his dad say. The player himself responding to his father’s sentiments threw himself to the floor in a big sulk. Not helping the team at all as the other players went over to see what was wrong. Players must realise from an early age that they must learn to accept substitutions with good spirit. So I kept him off for 10 minutes and explained to him and his father that the team is important and each individual player must help their team mates.

Managing substitutes is hard, and managing parents harder, but if you are fair with players over the course of a season then everyone should be more than happy.

If you go to my blog you can see an example of Wayne Rooney being taken off and his reaction to it. You can also see the substitution of Luis Figo when he played his last game for Inter Milan.

 Soccer Skills and Drills


2 Comments so far
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I definitely savored each and every little bit of it including all of the comments and I have you bookmarked to check out new stuff you post.

Comment by webwatcher

One word…… RESPECT!

Comment by Nick

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