Physical Ability in Soccer
By Michael Shanks
Is height is a critical trait for soccer players? Not really, but in the modern game it's becoming quite useful. Overall though, soccer is a sport in which small men can and do flourish at the highest level.
Just look at players like Xavi, Iniesta and Silva - all Spanish soccer stars who are quite short. Oh yeah, then there's a player called Lionel Messi, who certainly isn't tall.
Soccer is an incredible sport in which players of all sizes may rise to prominence, also augmenting its accessibility to everyone who wants to learn how to master the ball at their feet.
However, in today’s professional level, tall soccer players are an important part of your team when it comes to winning head balls in the back and scoring goals off of corner kicks.
Then there's a player like forward Peter Crouch from England who uses his height to his advantage on corners, but he's also is very skillful with the soccer ball at his feet.
But the beauty of soccer is it doesn't matter how tall or strong you are. The most important factor is how good you're with the soccer ball. While it's useful in the modern game to have strength and size, it is still skill on the ball that wins out over everything else. And that's really what makes soccer the greatest sport in the world.
Of course speed kills, and even players with less skill can become a critical factor. Speed breaks defenses down like no other strategy. But, as you get to the highest levels of the game, there's no replacement for ball skills and the pace of the ball. As they say, the ball never gets tired. Even a player with great speed has to have great touch and the ability to dribble, cut and avoid defenders. This of course takes dedication and practice - hours spent with the ball on your own juggling, dribbling and learn new skills.
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