When we launched the WCC Video Library our first task was to get most of our DVD collection uploaded and included. Once that was complete (it’s almost done), all of our new stuff will be high quality Hi Def videos.
So I’m pleased to announce that we have now started uploading more Hi Def videos…AND we have tons more to upload regularly over the coming weeks and months.
For those of you that subscribe to the Video Library, you can see the new videos when you log in and just search for “Team Defending in Four Stages” by John Walker.
GOOD NEWS…If you don’t subscribe to the Video Library, you can see the the first video right here for free.
We recently asked coaches to submit their favorite defending drills and small-sided game. We picked one from all the entries as the winner and the coach received a $200 gift certificate to our site. The winner was Gabriel Celante for his Transitional Defending Game. Here’s a look at the game.
One of the factors that always kept me from moving away from the 4-4-2 was a concern for how to cover the wide areas using a 4-3-3 or a 4-2-3-1. Once I understood how to teach my players to recognize cues and cover for each other I saw how the systems could be used to teach players more about the game. Requiring them to make decisions is the best way for them to learn rather than just putting them in a formation that has strictly defined roles where they just, ‘do their job’.
The 4-2-3-1 formation has become the system of choice for many of the worlds top professional and national teams like Real Madrid, Manchester United and Brazil. As coaches at every level have watched these top teams play they have looked for ways to implement the system with their college, high school and youth teams.
I think coaches spend a lot more time teaching offensive skills and techniques than they do teaching young players how do defend individually and in small groups. The attacking techniques of dribbling, passing and shooting are easy to create training sessions around and they are definitely the sexier skills of the game. But teaching a young player to defend a 1 v 1 effectively is vital to their development as a player.
This point was driven home to me last weekend as my teams played their first games of the new season. We had worked on all of the attacking skills but spent no time learning how to defend correctly. There are so many topics to cover that you just can’t do it all in two weeks of training sessions before the first game. So this week Continue reading ‘The Importance of Teaching Individual Defending’ »
Is it time to start ‘Fall’ practices again already! If you’re like me you found yourself asking this question this week. I don’t know where the summer break went but it’s gone.
Like the first few series of the football game, I like to plan out my first few weeks of training way ahead of time. I know I want to cover a number of topics including some technique to knock the rust off. I also want to start talking about how were going to Continue reading ‘First Practice of the Year’ »
We all have such limited time to impact the technical, tactical and physical abilities of our players that finding ways to integrate each of these into our training sessions is very important. If we were training four or five times a week we could afford to practice them in isolation but most of the coaches reading this won’t have that luxury. Continue reading ‘Speed Training Exercises’ »
No formation will fit every group of players. A coach that plays the exact same formation with every team will be frustrated by certain players inability to, ‘fit the formation’. For years my teams always played 4-4-2. There are some variations you can used depending on how you play your forwards and your central midfielders but that’s pretty much it. Sure, you could play sweeper/stopper with the center backs but very few teams play with a sweeper in the modern game. You can change every
formation to a small degree but I feel that the 4-3-3 is the most customizable of all of the popular formations.
A few weeks ago I had a post entitled, “Preparing for State Cup”. Well despite my coaching my U13 girls won the Kansas State Cup and are heading to the Region II Championship in Saginaw, MI. Obviously development is the most important thing at their age but I firmly believe that developing the will to win is just as important as technical, tactical and physical development. While the players had many individual goals that were centered on improvement, we had one common team goal, and that was to win State Cup.
The week after State Cup we have tryouts which causes a problem; what do you do if one of the players isn’t selected for next year’s team? Every team has the same issue and they deal with it in different ways. But this year Continue reading ‘Preparing for Regionals’ »
It’s hard to believe that the end of the soccer year is coming so quickly. Our State Cup is June 1/2/3 so were in review mode to prepare for the biggest tournament of the year. We want to do our best to be successful because the winners of State Cup attend the Regional Tournament to play against the best teams in our Region. The players learn so much for that type of experience that I want the girls to have that opportunity.