Sunday, after a sizable break, I went to watch my 11 year old grandson play 9 aside football. What a massive difference from watching some of the same lads playing futsal. Playing futsal the lads are on flat surface, the court is small so the players have to demonstrate close ball techniques, the game is fast, not hampered by a large muddy pitch that the football lads had to conquer before they could think about playing football.
The futsal player has no excuse for a bad pass; the footballer has many excuses, all rational and real. For a start he has to look at ball till the last second, the ball could hit a divot at any point, only when the player has the ball can he look up and assess the options around him. Too late, you have to evaluate before the pass arrives.
Saturday, by contrast, I watched Chelsea vs. Manchester City on television. The teams were playing football on a manicured pitch. Cut twice every day, underground irrigation and heating systems, my grandson and his mates would love to play on such a pitch. If they could their passing levels and passing choices would improve hugely.
Finally to the ball, the day was freezing cold and every long kick was preceded with a dead sound as boot struck a ball devoid of life. One player headed a high ball and ended prostrate to the floor. It had hurt; it had been like heading a brick. A new ball was found and air taken out of it before game proceeded.
Cheap footballs are a danger; they have a very thin plastic outer skin and a wafer thin bladder that offers no protection to the skull. More expensive match balls, if genuine, have a thick bladder and a softer leather outer layer. A futsal ball is seldom headed, but it does happen, the futsal ball bladder is filled with foam rubber, making it 100% more safe than a football, as the pole axed youngster would confirm. Click to have a look inside a futsal ball.
On the flip side, it can be great fun playing on grass and when you’re young the pitch and weather is forgotten because you’re playing with your mates.
Sure you will have your own opinions.
After more than 9-10 months working behind the scenes, very proud and happy to announce my come back to Sheffield FC – The World’s First Football Club as a new Head of Futsal Philosophy & Coaching Methodology. Sheffield FC – The World’s First Football Club was the club that gave me the first opportunity to be a Head Coach back in 2012. I spent 2 season with them, probably the seasons where I enjoyed coaching. Together we achieved things that we never thought we would when I signed for them. All this possible to the new partnership established between Sheffield FC – The World’s First Football Club and Bay Area Futsal Club.
As part of this new partnership, I am also very happy to announce that we have put together a Futsal Coaching Seminar in the City of the Steel on the 6th January 2019. Do not miss out this great opportunity to learn futsal. I am very looking forward to meeting good friends and visit a very nice city that it is on my heart. More info about registration below:
Thursday morning was continuous rain with high winds and I was getting phone calls that Novartis pitch was holding water. A decision was made to check the pitch and weather forecast at 1 p.m. The forecast was bizarre; from 5 p.m. onwards, winds would drop and no rain. Was I looking at Grimsby in another country?
Clee Red 1-14 Seven Seas
Newcomers Clee Community Reds vs. Seven Seas. Seas might be young but they are experienced. Most will have played 100+ games of futsal before hitting teens. Seas won 14-1 but score does not tell full story; Reds for first ten minutes matched Seas player for player and was moving the ball with some expertise. Seas experience told when they were attacking; their finishing was on another level. Blues will only learn the techniques of futsal scoring by playing more games.
Clee Blue 2-9 Red Devil’s
Clee Blues had mighty task of taming Red Devils, newcomers to league who have set off like a runaway train. The Devil’s have challenged the league with some great play; Blues to their credit took the game to Devil’s and scored couple themselves.
Healing 11-3 Sydney Park
Healing moved the ball with speed and a purpose Sydney struggled to cope with. Sydney moved players around but outcome was same. For Sydney not having a substitute player took its toll as the five on court got no respite.
The scores point to a one sided night, from the touchline it was not that way. Every team had an outstanding moment; every team had a player that did something special. Winning is great, but development is equally important. Not all teams start at same base point.
Grimsby Diamonds 4 Clee Madrid 3
Player of the Match: Could Only Be BOTH Teams
This was without doubt worth the highest praise for sportsmanship and GFLeague Futsal. Both teams from start to finish played their hearts out. Diamonds did win the first half 3 – 1 with some of their trademark play. But the second was set alive by Madrid coming out quickly, battering Diamonds in the process, to score two to draw level 3 – 3. However, what came next epitomised the standards these two teams have been trained to do and the exchange was electric. But Diamonds found a last gasp from somewhere for Dan to break away and fire across goal hard and low to score their winner leaving Diamonds still unbeaten. In any other match there would have perhaps been an obvious man of the match; but both mangers post match agreed that both teams had to at least share this accolade.
From my viewpoint as a referee and a coach of many years experience poor defending is a facet of play many of our teams need to address. Just how much time are teams spending on 1v1 defending? The FA looked at their own FA Coaches Association exhibition drills, drills performed over many years; only 20% was defencive drills.
Last two weeks I have had three teams concede free 10 meter free shots at goal because of accumulated fouls, worse still I have red carded two junior players after giving them two yellows for fouls that was easily avoidable.
Take a look at attached video, the maker was making a video to illustrate player movement and strategy with the ball. Watch the video twice, once concentrating on the attackers and then homing on the defenders. They are not charging in to make early physical contact; they are patient – organised – poised to counter attack when opportunity arises. They are not risking loading the foul count, they are organised as a unit to counter every attacking threat thrown at them. They are composed not aggressive.
An associate of mine has just spent six years goalkeeper coaching in France. He says both teams he worked for had a ‘no ball’ session every fourth week. This allowed them to talk, demonstrate and analyse with players individually and as a group. Should we be doing similar?
Defending is an art, let’s make it that way for our teams.