Coaching Soccer Successfully (Coaching Successfully Series) by Roy Rees

By Roy Rees

Offers fifty one drills to improve avid gamers' position-specific and total football strategies.

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We should not expect young athletes with busy social and academic lives to be single-minded. As vice president of development for the Washington State Youth Soccer Association, Page 8 I manage the Olympic Development Program in our state. One of the player evaluation tournaments we conduct, the Big Sky Tournament, takes place on the first weekend in May. This is an extremely important tournament for players because many college coaches are on hand to watch. Two years ago I received a phone call from an irate parent whose daughter was scheduled to play in the tournament on the girls' under-19 team.

One of my favorite video clips is Marco van Basten scoring a goal for the Netherlands in the 1988 Europe Cup match against Germany. We use this clip in clinics and ask the coaches to determine who caused the goal. At about the 85th minute the match is tied at 11. After a slow buildup in the back, typical of the Dutch, Ronald Koemans receives the ball. Koemans spots a wide-open Jan Wouters about 30 yards from the German goal. He passes to Wouters, who could have taken a shot from his position. Instead, Wouters scans the field and sees van Basten on a lateral run, two steps ahead of his marking defender.

It requires full attention, accurate interpretation, and constructive response. That takes time that coaches on a hectic schedule often don't believe they have. Sometimes we don't have time to listen because we are too busy correcting errors caused by earlier faulty communication. Let me give an example. John Blake takes care of our travel arrangements. For one of our trips he had chartered a bus to pick us up at 10:00 on a Friday morning. A few days later I told John that I wanted to leave earlier.

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