Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer PDF
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Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer PDF

THE FIRST EDITION of this book was published in 1990 and was immediately popular throughout English-speaking nations such as the United States, Canada, and Great Britain.

It is also distributed by the Australian FA as one of their recommended coaching books.

This second edition, with the help of Dick Bate, currently the director of elite coaching courses for the English Football Association, has been completely revised.

We have added several new sections, in particular a chapter on tactics and teamwork, and all the skills chapters now include a section devoted to developing the talents of your all-star players.

Other chapters incorporate developments in modern thinking regarding fitness and conditioning as well as nutrition and diet.

The main focus of the book has not altered. It was meant to be a coachfriendly book, and it still is.

We share the ideas and methods we have found to be successful with players of all levels of ability.

It is designed specifically to help parents, especially those who coach youth soccer teams, perhaps including their own children; students and specialist teachers; and all who wish to gain qualifications awarded by their national coaching organizations.

We have retained the original four parts because each one is significant in its own right. Collectively, they cover all aspects of coaching.

Part I addresses the development of a personal coaching philosophy and describes how to work with both individuals and groups.

Part II offers a complete understanding of how to introduce and develop the basic skills of the game to players of all levels of ability, from beginners to all-stars.

Part III addresses tactics, team formations, and the principles of play and explains how to judge whether your team is playing well.

Finally, in part IV, we offer advice on team management skills, physical and mental preparation, working with problem players, fitness and conditioning, and diet and nutrition.

Part I Preparing to Coach

In the first three chapters we invite you to consider developing a personal coaching style that recognizes a concern for the dignity of the individual and encourages in all players a love for the way the game is played.

All players, especially young players, who are encouraged to make decisions in an atmosphere of positive reinforcement are more likely to develop into valued team members, enjoy playing the game, and contribute to team unity and spirit.

In our experience, which includes working with professional and international teams, where winning can be a matter of job security or fierce national pride, players must be encouraged to believe that winning comes mainly as a result of good play, by which we mean play that is both fair and skillful.

A coach who shares this belief will enjoy coaching and, in our view, is more likely to become a winning coach. Remember, the best team doesn’t always win, but it usually does. 

Part II Skills and Techniques

The seven major skills, as well as goalkeeping, are presented in chapters 4 through 11, each of which contains a unique sequence of progressive practices.

For each skill, we present the basics of execution and quickly progress to its successful execution in match situations.

In this part we present progressively more challenging practices in accordance with the developing skills of the players.

No drill is an end in itself; rather, it is a platform for development.

For this reason, we include many examples of small-team games and practices to reinforce the skills learned in the practice session.

Part III Tactics and Teamwork

Chapter 12 addresses the principles of play, which you can use to analyze how well or how badly your team is playing.

Chapter 13 then goes on to explain the strengths and weaknesses of the various team formations and systems of play so that you can select, or modify, your own tactics in accordance with the state of the game or the quality of the opposition.

Chapter 14 builds upon chapters 2 and 3 and deals with the planning and implementation of methods and drills designed to coach in full-game situations. Chapter 15 is new and addresses the advanced tactics of team play.

We appreciate that not all coaches have players of sufficient maturity to absorb and execute these tactics.

Regardless of the level of your players, however, if you want to confirm or extend your knowledge of team tactics, we believe you will find this a fascinating chapter.

Finally, in chapter 16 we deal with set pieces—the tactics you can use when attacking or defending at throwins, corner kicks, free kicks, and penalty kicks.

Coaches of teams of all levels will find the drills and tactics in this chapter to be of immediate value.

The combined aim of parts II and III is to produce players who are both technically skilled and tactically aware—an objective that holds true for players of all levels. 

Part IV Team Management

In chapter 17 we offer advice on preparing your players on game days, both physically and mentally.

We deal with pregame talks, warming up, what to say at halftime, and how to say it.

We spend some time on postgame talks particularly because we want our players to appreciate that the result of the game, important though that is, is not the only way to evaluate the team’s performance during the game.

Chapter 18 contains advice on how to identify and work with problem players.

We also include a section on how to approach parents who might be causing difficulties—parents can cause problems too!

Chapter 19 deals with fitness and conditioning. Our fitness tests and drills are all designed to take place outside on the playing field, wearing soccer boots (cleats).

In this way, every coach can make use of them—all he or she needs is a soccer field or grassy area.

Of course, those lucky enough to have indoor training facilities will be able to adapt some, if not all, of them.

We also show how to adapt these activities to condition players of differing levels of fitness at the same time.

We include drills for stamina, acceleration, speed, and footwork.

Finally, we offer advice on nutrition and diet. A careful analysis of the various types of food, and their benefits, leads to suggestions about what and when to eat on game days, and the day before.

We believe that this new edition of Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer is an indispensable guide for coaches in any setting.

It retains much of the material from the original book but also provides a complete review of the principles, methods, and tactics that have developed over the years.

In addition, the text and diagrams are easy to understand so that any coach, beginner or advanced, will find this book helpful.

Also, the inclusion of a drill finder will allow you to quickly locate the drills and skills that you are looking for.

Of course, we hope that you will be sufficiently interested to read all of the chapters and share with us a genuine love for the game.


Skills and Strategies for Coaching Soccer



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