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"Team Work Scores Goals" Cheer
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Only 4 Soccer Practices Before Games Start
Tips, Soccer Tactics, Soccer Formation, Style of Play
Where Soccer Players Can be Most Successful

The following was posted on the Premium Forum:

Hi SoccerHelp,

Love the site. This is my first year in coaching soccer, and I've devoured most of the information you have here.

Here's my lineup:

A - Fast scorer, good on defense, good ball handler, best player, rumored to tire easily

B - Same not quite as good as A

C - Same not quite as good as A -- doesn't tire easily

Little D - Fast but out of control but never tires, haven't seen him score much in small sided scrimmages

Big E - Slower than B & C but has a nose for the net, tough kid

F - Fast, not very tough, misses lots of practices so unsure of skills

Big G - Goalie, slow, good punter, good hands

Big H - Slow, tough attitude, not much leg or ball handler

Little I - Fast, good handler, not very aggressive

I was thinking of this line up. (We need seven in the field so only one sub):

2-1-2-2 Formation
Goalie: Big G
Fullbacks: Big H, Rotate A & B & C at other spot
Stopper: D (or rotate A & B & C in at Stopper, F, and FB?)
Mids: Rotate E F I
Forwards: A & B & C

Here's my thinking. Big G has lots of experience playing goalie, and basically only one that wants it. (If any one of the MF ask, I'll get them in too).

H is a natural Fullback if I can teach him to stay near the posts. He'll clog up the opponents attack.

A is my best player, and I'd put him at Stopper but he appears to tire easily and is a great scorer, so if I defend deep, I'm not sure that he has the gas to go both ways and score. I'd rather put him at Forward, and get my fun loving but out of control player to roam and defend and push the ball up when necessary. Only problem is he is smallest kid on team. Maybe I should put B & C at Stopper instead.

I like my mid guys where they are.

At Forward, I need A & B & C to learn to work together. At the same time, they are my best players and I'd love to have them strong up the center with one at stopper and two at forwards.

What do you think? We are two new coaches with new players but the parents have bought into the 'games' and high-energy, up-tempo practices (we were only allowed enough time to have four practices before the season starts this weekend!) and so far the kids have been great. As a new team, with only one sub, however, I'm definitely worried that we are going to get embarrassed by the other teams who have played together for years and have 10-11 players per team. Thanks for the games and the practice plans, they have been a life-saver.


Larry, Premium Member


Hi Larry,

Congratulation! It's obvious you have done your homework. I think you have a great plan and will be a great coach! I think you, and the other "experienced" coaches, will be surprised by your success and by how good your players get, and when the other parents see the skill your players develop, they will want their kids on your team.

Here are some ideas:

  1. Teach Coaching Rule No. 3 -- it's worth 2 or 3 goals per game. Seriously -- teach this! It's easy to teach and will make a HUGE difference. You can even teach it before the game in about 15 minutes.

  2. If you haven't tried our motivational patches, try them. There's a 10% off coupon at "Coupons" for Premium Members. They make a difference -- read the Testimonials for what coaches say. They will motivate your players. You need everyone to come to practice and games -- the patches will help, are a lot of fun, create great memories, and kids will want to be on your team. Give patches for effort, bravery, defense, doing the things that can lead to goals such as being in position for rebounds, for listening to the coach, and for coming to practice AND to games (you need ALL your players to come to your games). I would also use the V for Victory patches to teach your kids the desire to win.

  3. I would think about rotating E into Forward because he sounds like he can score.

  4. Tell your Stopper and MF's to just kick it straight ahead and tell your Forwards to expect that and to be in position to Win the Ball

  5. Play "Dribble Across a Square" as a warm-up to start EVERY practice.

  6. Play "Dribble Around Cone & Pass Relay Race" a LOT and use it to teach "Aggressive Receiving". Here's what Coach Greg said: "We played Dribble Across a Square and Dribble Around the Cone and Pass Relay Race at every practice, and the results were phenomenal."

  7. Play "Win the 50/50 Ball or be the First Defender 1v1 Attacking and Defending" quite a bit. Corey, a U-12 coach, said: "The girls loved this game. This was one of their two favorites (the other is Dribble Around Cone & Pass Relay Race) and I found this game brought out their competitive side more than any other."

  8. Play the "Shoulder Tackle & Strength on the Ball" game at the next few practices as a Warm Up.

  9. Whenever a goal is scored, have all the players come together in the Center Circle to do a "Team Work Scores Goals" or "Team Work" cheer. This is very important because it helps build team work and stops players from all wanting to be Forwards (everyone gets to see that all positions are important and that everyone has contributed when a goal is scored).

  10. Read Positioning Rules for "rules" to teach your FBs, ST, MFs and F.

  11. Leave your fast Forward Pushed Up all the time when your goal is under attack so he can get fast breaks and keep the opposing FBs backed up.

I think you will have a good team.

Please let me know what works best and what helps the most.

David at SoccerHelp