Terry Michler’s Soccer Philosophy

1. My Background
37 years as Head Varsity Coach at CBC High School (thru 2007 season)
Started playing: age 5 – CYC – Club – High School – College – Professional
Soccer visits: England, France, Portugal, Germany, and Holland (6 times)
Attended World Cup ’94 USA, ’98 France, and European Cup 2000 Holland
Attended 10 day Coaching Course (’97) at KNVB Headquarters — Zeist, Holland
Observed 10 days of training / matches at Ajax Amsterdam — youth /professional
Director of CBC-dutch touch International Soccer Program (Camp, Education, Travel)
Author of 3 soccer books (through World Class Coaching)
2. My Philosophy
Good teams combine good performance with good chemistry
A good team is built upon the qualities of the players – technical, physical, emotional
Proper training with emphasis on critical analysis and proper structure – high demands
Technique and insight (tactical awareness) are the cornerstones for team success
Formula for success: talent – effort – chemistry – coaching – luck
Coaching: manage (organize), motivate, and evaluate – develop an action plan
Coaches: informed, organized, structured, enthusiastic, passionate and compassionate
3. Development
Develop the “soccer brain” in your players
Patient process over time – no short cuts
Mastery of technique (ball skills) is THE most important ingredient to success
Tactics and systems are very secondary to mastering technique
There is no system that makes up for poor technique
Quality touches – first and last touch – receive and release with accuracy and control
Technical development occurs in 3 stages: fundamental, game-related and functional
Perfect practice makes perfect — repetitions of doing the right thing in the right way
Practice must resemble the game – under pressures of time, space and opponent(s)
“Dry Swimming” – training: elements of soccer — goals, opponents, rules, direction
Tactical Training: 3 stages — individual, small group, team
4. Technique – Touch
Keep-away versus Give-away
Good, clean first touch allows more time on ball for next play (maintain possession)
Bad first touch leads to turnover and fight back for ball or defend (loss of possession)
Players must be able to use both feet equally well and all body parts comfortably
Receive – Pass — Move —— the essence of attacking soccer
2 touch play and mandatory 2 touch develop passing and receiving skills
Higher the skill level, the smaller the playing area and more opposition/restrictions
Lower the skill level, the larger the area with less opposition and restrictions
5. Insight
An eye for the game – analytical
Take from the game to practice and back to the game
Small-sided games with various conditions – play to goals
Recognize and solve soccer problems as they arise
Know what to do when – while under pressure
Handle the complexity and unpredictability of the ever-changing situations
6. Tactics and Systems
Would you rather lose 2-1 or win 1-0 –– the difference could well be in breakdowns
Analysis of problems (breakdowns) and the correct solution(s) are critical
Develop plan based around team’s strengths, not weaknesses
Identify team strengths and weaknesses
Devise a plan that will give the team its best chance to win
Winning works !!! attitude and enthusiasm increase with winning
Tactics: options/choices – must always have at least 2
Tactics: plan of action – team, small group, individual
System: alignment of player : back to midfield to forward: roles of each player / line
Style: how you play: direct or possession or a combination of the two
Soccer’s 3 Main Moments: we have ball, they have ball, transition between the two
7. Team as an Orchestra
Good individual qualities must all come together as one harmonious unit
All the parts work for the good of the whole
The coach acts a conductor – bringing all the parts together in cohesion
The objective is to achieve a performance that is greater than the sum of its parts
8. Player Evaluation – TIPS (Ajax)
Technique –mastery of ball skills while under game pressure
Insight — a picture of everything that is going on around you with a solution
Personality – a winner’s mentality – hate to lose – good team player –
Speed – physical, technical and tactical – speed of thought and play
9. Soccer is a Simple Game
We complicate it — walk before you run
Master the basics and build from there
Teach the game – know the game — study the game
In its simplest form, it is a game of opposites
It comes down to many individual situations – 1vs 1
Strive for numbers up whenever possible and take advantage
10. Fun
The key is to have fun while working hard, learning and improving
Variety is the spice of life – boredom kills enthusiasm
End each session with some sort of game or competition
Make the kids look forward to coming back for more
In soccer, the action of the legs is determined by the brain and the heart
OR IS IT
Busy with brainless soccer?
Terry Michler
Soccer Coach
CBC High School
St. Louis, Mo
michlert@cbchs.org
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