When I was 16 I got a ‘B’ in my French O Level at school which I was quite pleased about. In my early 20’s I spent 3 weeks in France and I was no better at speaking to the locals than my girlfriend who had never done a French lesson in her life.
However, my girlfriend had Dutch parents who although by the time I met her rarely if ever spoke Dutch at home did so quite a bit when she was little she told me. When we were in the Netherlands for 3 weeks within a few hours she was able to hold conversations with her relatives and by the end of the stay was chatting away comfortably.
Why am I telling you this?
Well I can see lots of parallels with coaching football.
I had done 4 years of French at school with the volcanic Miss Black but it was proving useless to me when I was actually in France needing to speak French. For me to impress my girlfriend I was going to have to bump into someone called Mr Bertillon who had forgotten to wear his watch and wanted to know the time so desperately he was prepared to ask a tourist. To really cap it off Mr Bertillon would have to be prepared to stand there while I asked him “where is the train station”or my personal favourite “where is the library” although I probably wouldn’t have understood any of his answers.
My girlfriend on the other hand had never had a ‘proper’ education in Dutch. She had simply been in an environment where Dutch was spoken.
The parallel comes from the current debate about whether a proper education in football involves a sizeable amount of time spent doing drills or isolated technical practices compared to a games based method of training.
Just so you know I am a firm believer in learning how to play football with as many elements of the actual game involved as possible.
Now the reason I am writing this blog is I feel I keep finding ways to back up the fact I prefer games based training. I have even managed to see a trip around Europe in the late 80’s as proof it works.
What I would like is to hear from Coaches or read articles that have the opposite view.
Could anyone point me towards articles or studies that challenge my current thinking. It would be most appreciated as I feel all I do is read articles that back up what I think and so may simply be looking in the wrong places.
Love to hear from you
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Till next time