Wednesday, June 6, 2012

U13 - First Season Game

The good, the bad and the ugly.  Our first game of the season took us from one extreme to the other.

Last night our U13 boys played Mississauga Croatia.

We saw all of our work at training put into play during the first half.  We were challenging for balls, wall passes, crosses and penetrating passes.  Our 1v1 defending was a bit off, but overall we played a solid half.  We were stretching the field a lot more than usual, but it started getting a bit out of hand the last 5 minutes with some passes going nowhere.

We took a 1-0 lead on a beautiful sequence and a nice finish.  We conceded a goal on a string run by the opposing striker. 

Half time 1-1.

Our coaching points for halftime:
  • Good challenges so far.
  • Good choices on flick-ons and laying the ball back
  • The forward pass is only good if there is a forward target.
  • More patience while defending 1v1 on the wings and in midfield.
  • Not moving as a unit, leaving too many gaps the last 10 minutes or so.
The second half got messy.  Boys were losing their focus off the ball, there was less running and more errant passes.  But what really killed us was losing our shape.  We tried to make some changes to plug up some holes.  Some boys were walking forward while others were walking back.  Our challenges stopped altogether for a 20 minute span.  So when a pass was short or a challenge lost, we were caught off guard.

We ended up losing 5-1.  
I am not disappointed.  The first half showed we can play and know what to do.  The last 10 minutes of the game the boys were showing us they still had some great ideas and we managed to put together some scoring chances.

We had some players show us they were definitely improving in their specific roles on the team.
I could say we didn't work hard enough.  That might be partially true, but that's blaming the kids.  It's our job to coach, observe, adjust and coach some more.  The kids look to us for information and guidance.  In the coaching world, the players win and the coach loses.  :-)

This weekend we go to Erie, PA.  After the three games we can determine the main topics of the next few sessions.

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