In order to have more time on the ball and to have the essentially slow down for you need to have the best touch on the ball. The best and most elite players have a great touch on the ball. This allows them to play the game and make better decisions without having to spend time controlling the ball and reacting to situations around them.
Unlike many other sports where set plays are drawn up and practiced in advance in the hope of implementing them in game-time situations (with stoppage play), soccer is a game of decision making where the majority of the decisions are taken by the players on the field in real time with no stoppage play. In a 90-minute game, the game will constantly evolve based on where the ball is on the field and what scenarios are presented to the players. A coach’s job is done in the weeks and days prior to the game, not during a game. Therefore, players need to have a well-developed soccer IQ in order to make proper decisions in split seconds over and over again. With that being said, how do you develop your soccer IQ? Below are certain strategies you can try-out with the aim of improved decision making in a game-time situation.
Depending on what province or state you are in there are different approaches to taking your coaching certifications to the next level. In Ontario, The Ontario Soccer Association, offers numerous courses which range from introductory classes which include Soccer For Life to more in depth certificates such as your provincial licenses A, B and C amongst others. Each certificate ranges from a two day session to much longer. There are also different forms of evaluations depending on the certificate you are enrolled in. That being said, do not be intimidated by these programs. The courses can all be attained in a relatively short period of time by those willing progress in the sport.
Your team is at the opponent’s goal and is about to score a goal. A lot of players commit because the situation looks promising. Suddenly, their goalie grabs the ball and launches the ball down field. Uh oh…it is a counter attack. You begin to backtrack and realize that you and your other defender are the only two players back while they attack with 3…and here comes the 4th. What do you do?
I’ve been reading Sir Alex Ferguson’s autobiography and wanted to shed light on this book. But before I begin, much has already been written about this book and the wave of interest has gone by for many. However, a great deal can be learned from this man who won so much over his career and managed some of the biggest personalities in world football.
This year I had the pleasure of training a competitive soccer team that consisted of girls 15 years of age and younger. The way I prepared for training in week 1 and the way I prepared for training in week 10, were completely different. Here is what I learned.
You’re playing on a new team with new players, a different coach and they play a different system. Now you have to force your way into the line-up. How do you do it? Unless you’re a clinical goal scorer and can impact the game greatly, you’ll likely play where the team asks you to play. And yes, this could be in a position where you’re greater strengths are not as highlighted as before. This does not have to be a bad thing but now you have to do your best to understand your teammates, your opposition and communicate this as a unit. Here are three ways you can do so: