Did you have a good game?

Two big frustrations I had when I played was not getting the ball when in a good position and getting conflicting shouts from the sidelines. You know what I mean when you hear something like ‘you have to be there to support’ and then the next time you make sure you are there to support the player and the situation pans out differently and you hear something like ‘you have to fill the box’. Basically I doubt I was ever completely sure what it took to have a good game or not.

I think not getting the ball when in a good position will always be there because there is only one ball and lots of players. However I know we can work on the other one.

If we, as Coaches, give our players guidelines or jobs to do before the game then we can reduce the amount of frustration in our players and ourselves because we are clear in how we want everyone to play.  This should mean the players enjoy themselves more therefore play better simply because they know what they are expected to do. This is far better than sending players out without any instruction and then shouting at them what to do.

We, then, as Coaches have to make sure we don’t change our tune when things don’t go to plan. I am not saying you cannot change how the players are playing in a game but we can’t ask players to do something and they do exactly what we say and then we tell them or make them feel they didn’t play well.

Obviously we cannot expect all age groups to be given the same type or amount of jobs to do in a game. From around U8/U9 upwards though if we start simply and say give each player (or group of players) one thing to remember to do when our team has possession and one thing when we have not got possession and build from there.

By building I mean you could give each player more jobs or you could introduce jobs specifically for groups of players or units of the team.

When we give players jobs we have to make sure they can control what you asked them to do.  What I mean by that is look at the difference between if you ask a player to try to deliver crosses to the back post from wide areas or if you ask them to set up goals at the back post from a cross.

The player constantly delivers crosses into the back post throughout the game and with one job comes off knowing for certain they had a good game and with the other it depends on if any goals were scored yet the player had exactly the same performance.

I have found that this really helps the Coaches as well as the players because the jobs the Coaches give reflect the playing style they want to see so the players if they do their jobs play the type of football the Coach wants. Also it makes it very easy to do half time team talks because the Coach bases the team talk on how the jobs are being performed and whether we need to change them.

Each coach has to come up with their own guidelines or jobs for the players in their team because each Coach has a different idea of how they want the game to be played. The idea behind this blog is simply that if we give the players jobs to do we remove the frustration from the players of not knowing what the Coach wants them to do plus it helps us Coach the game better.

As always I need to hear other Coach’s’ opinions because we all want to coach our players in the best possible manner.

Thank you to everyone who contacts me and leaves messages on the blog it is really appreciated.

Look forward to hearing from you

Please leave a comment or email me seanthecoach@icloud.com

Follow me on Twitter @SeanDArcy66

Till next time


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