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Ask Dave - Low numbers at training

The importance of the magic man

in Attacking, Email newsletters

When you play training games with your team if you have an odd number of players it is always a good idea to play a 'magic man'. This is a position of great responsibility because this player can catch the opposition out during transition or can be the player who creates goal scoring chances because he/she is less likely to be marked when the ball is transferred. MORE

Winning back possession

in Defending, Email newsletters

It may sound like I am being negative suggesting ways to stop teams passing but study any of the successful teams around the world and you will see the hard work that goes into stopping teams passing through or around midfields and defences. MORE

Score goals in the New Year

in Email newsletters, Shooting

One thing we all wish for in the New Year is that our teams score more goals and do so using the style of play we work on with our teams at training. Pass and move, get into good positions and create goal scoring chances. MORE

Players listen to the coach

New Year… Think ahead!

in Email newsletters, Team Management

Read the advice while you are preparing for your New Year's Eve party! Why not invite your players for a get together while they are still on school holidays so they can have a kickaround with the ball while you talk to the parents about your plans for the coming season. MORE

SCW + USC

Listen to some great advice

in Email newsletters

Over the Christmas and New Year break it is a great time to sit back, put your headphones on and sink into your own world of coaching youngsters. To that end I have two things for you to listen to that gives great advice for your New Year coaching. The Soccer Coach Weekly podcast has... MORE

Last training before Christmas?

in Email newsletters, Fun soccer games

It is such a busy time of the year and parents and coaches alike still need to think about getting to training and running sessions that keeps the players focused even though their minds are on Christmas. And the fact that they had their Christmas party at the club at the weekend already gives an end of term feel! MORE

Start scoring more goals!

in Email newsletters, Shooting

It can be a frustration when your players take their chances in training, but fail to do so when they play a match. To help mitigate this problem, I am always using sessions to help all my players to score goals, so if one player is off colour in a match there is always another one to score the goals. MORE

Youth team

Generate a hunger for the ball

in Attacking, Email newsletters

A couple of weeks ago I was on a course discussing what got youth players thinking during a game and how they could react to that. If their team has the ball what should they be thinking about and if they have lost the ball how should they react. MORE

How to defend counter attacks

in Email newsletters, Tactics

It is all well and good if you have a goalkeeper who is confident enough to clear counter attacks or long balls over the defence – but that is a rare quality in the youth game. You have to put in plans to stop this kind of attack. MORE

Twin strikers can solve youth scoring problems

in Email newsletters

I was watching a match on TV this week and there was a wonderful example of twin strikers creating space to score a goal. One striker ran towards the near post dragging the defence with him and the other targeted the back post heading into the net unmarked. It works well in youth football MORE

Have it, lose it, win it back

in Email newsletters, Passing

Who doesn’t love to dominate the opposition with a lot of possession by intelligent short passes which in the end opens up the entire opponents defensive line? It is a fantastic tactic to use but remember you also need a plan to win the ball back when your team inevitably loses it! MORE

Create your own Fergie Time

in Attacking, Email newsletters

Scoring last minute goals can be due to the opposition tiring or suddenly becoming less attacking and sitting back hoping for the final whistle – but it can also be because your team is putting in a big effort to score a winner or to rescue a point with clever use of tactics. MORE

Why you should coach ball skills

in Ball Control and Footwork, Email newsletters

I cannot stress enough what a difference it makes if you get players to practice ball skills every week at training. I spend the first 10 minutes of every session letting the players have a ball each and practice ball skills like turning, step overs, feints, left and right dribbles – it is a fantastic way to start the session and encourage players to be more effective with the ball at their feet. MORE

Get onside with offside

in Email newsletters, Tactics

Every team has players who struggle with offsides - your team may not use the offside rule now but one day it is going to drive you all crazy, so here’s the lowdown on how to attack and defend using the offside rule. MORE

Get midfielders scoring goals

in Email newsletters, Midfield

Attacking midfielders have always been great to watch... especially when I have had the benefit of a great attacking midfielder in my own team. But even if I haven't been blessed with one I can create attacking midfielders that will run the game for me. MORE


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