5 Things to Consider When Planning Preseason

5 Things to Consider When Planning Preseason

Preseasons are just around the corner for most teams. Here are 5 things to consider from John De Witt, Head Sports Performance Coach, Houston Dynamo Academy & Houston Dash, when developing your plan. 

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Making Space for the "Go To" Player

Making Space for the "Go To" Player

Every center midfield partnership should have a ball winner and a “Go To” man. The ball winner is self explanatory, his job is simple, close down the opposition, win the ball and give it to the “Go To” player, the creator, the distributor, the potential match winner. Some teams may have more than one, some teams don’t have any.

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Breakaway Attacking & Defending

Breakaway Attacking & Defending

One player from each team plays 1v1v1 and can score on either goal.  Coach or facilitator plays balls in from opposite side after score or ball leaves playing area (it is important to keep balls flowing into the game as soon as one ball is dead).  Rotate players every minute.  Coach players to be deceptive and “spin out” to attack other goal based on where 2 defenders are.  Teach strikers poise in front of goal to finish chances and encourage each player to work hard for the minute. This is a demanding physical game but is fun and has a lot of real match carry overs.  Remind players not to tackle the keeper, once the “keeper” call is made.  You can also use this exercise to train your goalkeepers on breakaway saves but remember to make sure your coaching position is by the goal to maximize your coaching impact. 

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How to Defend Properly as a Soccer Team

How to Defend Properly as a Soccer Team

From Coaches Training Room

The art of defending isn’t as complex as some soccer coaches and players fear. We’ve often felt the following set of rules of how to defend properly are overlooked. Building a team with a clear understanding of how to defend properly as a team can be the difference between success and failure. Consider the old saying “if you don’t concede, you can’t lose”. Building a team with a strong attack is very rewarding when it works, but what happens when you don’t have the ball? Or worse, can’t get the ball?

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The Coaching Process – Lessons Learned from Legendary Basketball Coach John Wooden

The Coaching Process – Lessons Learned from Legendary Basketball Coach John Wooden

Former Manchester United and Everton player Phil Neville spoke last week about his current experience as Assistant Manager of La Liga side Valencia. He compared his coaching experiences in a new country as equivalent to a final year in University as he continues his pathway towards a Manager‘s role at a top club someday.

His comment made me think of my own coaching journey. Two weeks ago I began an Online Master’s program at the University of Stirling (Scotland) in Performance Coaching.  My main motivation for enrolling in the program was to have an opportunity to learn best practices from leading coaches in other sports and improve my own skill-set at improving the performance levels of the players I coach.

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