Don’t Make Stupid Fouls in Soccer

When you lose the ball as an attacking soccer player and you’re in the attacking third, don’t foul the defender in frustration trying to win the ball back. Show some restraint and wisdom and just stand the player up. Put pressure on the player and force them to kick the ball out of bounds or make a bad pass—try to win a corner if you can but don’t blatantly foul the player from behind.

Far too often you see a player who’s in the corner loose the soccer ball and then turn around and foul the other player when their back was turned and they were bound to loose the ball out for a corner or make a bad pass towards the center of the field.

It’s extremely frustrating to watch someone do this as a fan, as a coach, or as a teammate, when you have the other team locked in their own defensive third and then you let them out with a stupid foul—a push or overly pressuring the player since you’re frustrated. Don’t foul, just stand the player up and let them make the mistake.

Related to this, if a defender has the ball and his or her back is turned, that’s the time to move up as a team and close down the space, push everyone up and lock the other team in their defensive third. The same goes for a throw-in that’s near the other team’s goal box, everyone should mark up tight and see if they can win the ball in the opposing teams attacking third.

Now let’s look at some good defending and tackling in soccer.