Some Cures for Sideline Coaching

The following post comes from Karl Dewazien, CEO/Internet Clinician at FUN SOCCER Enterprises. Koach Karl is the author and publisher of the world-famous “FUNdamental Soccer” book series, the cornerstone of Youth Soccer practice and Small Sided games. Find out more at

What can you do about that horrible, anxious gnawing that eats away at you when your team is not playing like you planned? Nothing you practiced is working. Your coaching effort is going down that drain.

Let me suggest a number of possible alternatives for you or even some of your parents.

Are you interested in statistics? Keep stats. It can be simple stats like shots taken, goals scored, passes attempted, passes completed, steals, etc. The statistics can be as complicates as you want.

Is match analysis your thing? If so, add diagrams and notes to your stats and make plans for what to cover at half-time and in the next practice.

Talk to the substitutes. They are not facing the pressure of a moving ball, confined space or an active opponent. They have the room to listen. They may even be apprehensive about going into the game. Explain to them what you want them to concentrate on when they do go in. Point out examples of good play they can emulate.

Sometimes it helps to just lighten up. Based on what you see on the field, crack a joke or two about what you must have overlooked in practice.

Prepare for half-time by checking your notes, making sure that the drinks and and cleat cleaners; etc. are ready.

Take pictures. That’s right, bring your cell-phone and take action shots. One coach I know religiously takes pictures at every game and puts them on the teams’ website. He says it takes his mind off all the worries that might otherwise bedevil him to shout and scream. His parent and players have wonderful memories from the time they spent on the team.

How well do you know your parents? Take time to get better acquainted. Strike up a conversation with each of them. Some parents get down on their kids. Point out something that a parent can praise.

Some parents are shouters themselves. Maybe, they are hurting inside because their child is not playing quite up to the level of Messi. Maybe there are even worried that someone will think this reflects adversely on their parenting.

Talking to the parents will divert them from shouting and will help calm their fears and anxieties.

Choose from one of the above or create your own diversion, But, do something to leave the players alone so they can enjoy and learn from the game.

Final Note: Thank you for taking the time to read this article and Sharing it with your soccer community. Your Comments on this subject are also very much appreciated

Your FUNdamental,

Koach Karl (Karl Dewazien)