Everyone has those soccer games where they’re struggling or things just don’t seem to be going right. You’re just not at your best and in a bit of a funk. How do you get out of that and get into the game? How do you build up your confidence and play the way that you’re capable of playing?
Let’s look at some ways to break out of a slump and get involved in the game. Let’s find ways to get back into the game if you’ve made a mistake or aren’t playing to your full potential. As the Nike Soccer ad says: write your own future.
The key is to just keep going and forget about the previous play whether you scored a goal or lost the ball. Take advantage of the next opportunity to make an impact on the game, whether that’s winning the ball or supporting a teammate and helping them escape pressure.
1. Ask for the ball all the time. Put yourself in a position to receive the ball. Show that you want the ball and are there to help your team. This keeps you in the game and on your toes.
2. Get the ball and give it. Try making a pass with the intention of getting it back. Seek out the soccer ball and then play a few simple passes just so you get some touches on the ball. Spread the ball around and find the open player. Pass and move.
3. Take people on. Dribble at people and go by them and take a shot or lay the ball off to a teammate at the last minute. Be active, not passive. Don’t dribble in your defensive third but wait until you have a defender isolated and there’s space behind the defender. Put yourself in a position to dribble at someone. This gets us to our next tip below.
4. Make a dangerous run. If you make a diagonal run across the field and into the attacking third it forces the defense to watch you and opens up areas for your teammates. And if you’re open, and get the ball, you have the space and freedom to try something, since you’re in the attacking third.
5. Get stuck in. If you’re not playing well, and feel like an outsider and not involved in the play, make a touch tackle and win the ball.
6. Don’t take criticism personally. Consider whether someone’s advice or feedback could help you improve your game. They’re usually just trying to motivate you.
7. Play with emotion. Try to pump up your team and get them going by encouraging them. And then sometimes you have to yell and scream and get into the game that way. Don’t get a yellow or red card, but maybe even get upset at the referee or the linesman.
8. Forget mistakes. Even the best players miss open goal shots or lose the ball from time to time. The best players move on. They seek out the next goal scoring chance and finish it.
9. Work for your team. Use your skills with the soccer ball to create a chance for a teammate. Hold off a defender and setup a a teammate to take a shot.
The time has come for players to carve their name in history. One touch, tackle or free kick could crush a nation’s hopes or cause them to build a statue in your honor. Drogba, Wayne Rooney and Cristiano Ronaldo are ready to Write The Future.