Soccer coaching tips to help your team on match day
This is an extract from a useful article for youth soccer coaches.
If you're coaching a young soccer team, you CAN make a difference on match day, yet few coaches take as much care during the vital minutes of the match as they do with the pre-match preparation.
Follow these simple soccer coaching do’s and dont’s, and you will make a difference once the game is underway.
DON’T micro-manage the game. As a coach with your experience and ability, it is easy to talk particular players through every move. This is potentially destructive because it stifles their instinct for the game, or their innate ability (which may even exceed the coach’s). Positive encouragement will give players confidence. Psychologists tell us that it is better to say “hit the target” than “don’t miss”.
DO find the right moment. Information needs to be given when players are most receptive, for instance, when they can concentrate on what YOU are saying – NOT in the middle of a play or even within 30 seconds of the half time break.
DON’T get distracted away from the game. Talk to spectators and the other coaches afterwards. Your players need your full attention. Create a bubble for you and your team. Make sure at half time the bubble continues. Youth teams suffer the most from a babble of comment from parents, confusing the main message you want to deliver. Your team needs to avoid conflicting messages.
DO remember to play for today. Focusing on future aims during the game adversely affects players’ concentration.
DO Break the game down. Organize the game into different chunks with achievable targets. For example, challenge your defense to not give up any points/goals against for the next ten minutes, even when at half time you are well ahead.
Those are great tips! A tip I would suggest for youth players is doing evaluations. Something that can help a player progess not only with skills but also understand the game better. Here are some tips on how to create an evaluation. Soccer Evaluations