It’s not for everyone

When we need you to come to football practice we are much more likely to try to control the outcome. Compliance.

When we want you to come to football practice there is room for choice. Flexibility.

The choices we make reflect our motives.

Here is my note that I’ll be sending to all the parents of my u10 and 11’s teams for the coming season. I want to give coaches, parents, and players the choice not to choose my approach. Flexibility.

It’s an expansion on my second coaching principle of last season.

#1 I don’t care who wins. I do care that my kids compete for and with each other.

#2 I don’t care about the better players getting more game time. I do care that each kid gets the same amount of playing time.

#3. I don’t care that my best players play out of position. I do care that all my players play in every position on the pitch.

I want you to come to training. I don’t need you to come to training.

All my players are treated equally. No preference is given to any player because of attendance or lack of attendance to training or previous matches. The end result is always the same. Each player will get the same amount of playing time.

How it works:

If there are too many players to make 7 v 7 work, I’ll ask the other coach to make up teams of 5 v 5 or similar. I’ll always look to reduce the number of players, never increase, to help each player get time on the ball.

The alternative is to have lots of players standing on the sidelines, lost in large-sided games, or picking only the players who came to training last week.

I want you to make a choice to come to football. The flip side is not wanting to come to every match or practise. Provided you turn up when you say you are going to turn up, there will never be a problem.

The main goal is to give you all an equal opportunity to play football. I hope we can all stay flexible to that goal.



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Simon A Harling

Simon A Harling

Coach, speaker, blogger on fitness, coaching & personal leadership