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Regarding ‘Becoming a Soccer Intellectual’

EXCELLENT Koach Karl!!!!! The point about coach’s stop learning in your article, “Become a Soccer Intellectual” is so true.

The idea of reading and studying the sport has taken a knock in the past decade. This maybe the result of TV and the easy access to DVD’s as so many ideas have moved to a TV screen and so it is far easier to sit and watch whereas reading takes effort & concentration.
These two skills seem to be in short supply when you observe many youth & college games.

Between the game habit of both players & coaches of a decade ago where coaches had to search more for ideas or you saw a clever idea by an opponent. This learning energy seems to have slowed down and with it the search to learn more.

Plus everyone jumps on the latest band wagon like warm up games of “tiki-taka. It seems to be the “in” game but even Pep Guardiola its biggest proponent has moved on to like all good coaches. He kicked it into touch and found better games and so “tiki-taka” is relegated to the wastepaper bin.

This past summer doing numerous camps, clinics, numerous coaches of some fame spouted about “t-t” I asked them if they had heard of Pep’s statements. None of them knew. Ignorance is alive and well.

To me I call it “fiddle-football” as too many players try to be too clever & give the ball away in sloppy ways. Games should have direction & consequence. Going from Barcelona to Bayern Munich and now to Man. City Pep has modified and adapted his ideas to meet the demands of a new challenge. Good coaches are always looking to get them & their players better every day.

We need all youth coaches to set high standards like Pep Guardiola and I recommend his book “Pep Confidential” now available in the USA. You will see his feelings about “tiki-taka” and why its rubbish.

Youth coaches have a big responsibility and you should be on the look out to learn all the time. This keeps you fresh & energized.

Graham Ramsay

Graham Ramsay is the Director of Soccer Sphere, a soccer educational cum marketing company based near Washington, DC. He is also the former Director of Soccer Development for the Maryland State Soccer Association with nearly 20 years of service to the youth in that state. Graham was one of the first National Staff Coaches for US SOCCER and has written several books and numerous articles. His latest book, SOCCER FOR GIRLS has sold nearly 60,000 copies worldwide. Graham has spent extensive time traveling with soccer teams in Brazil. As well as coaching in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and across Europe. While in the USA has coached in over 30 States doing clinics, workshops to helping college teams reach the NCAA's to taking Annandale Boys Club to winning the McGuire Cup (U19 National Championship) to developing high school programs to help creating one of the finest youth programs in the USA - MSI in Montgomery County, Maryland. Graham Ramsay also runs Soccer Clinics! Click here for more information.