Attacking Development

Well done to the Perth Glory Youth League team for recording their seventh consecutive league win against the Central Coast Mariners yesterday, courtesy of a screamer of a goal from Andrijia Jukic. The young talent from WA have in recent weeks played some excellent football, while at the same time showing passion and determination.

Credit must go to coach Gareth Naven who like all the youth league coaches has had to cope with first team players dropping down to get game time, or returning from injury, and having to rearrange his squad almost on a weekly basis. One of the positives has been that in most cases the first team players have come down to the Youth team and wanted to play, unlike some senior players at other clubs.

Naven is also lucky that he has not had his charges pushing for first team squad inclusion, as at other clubs this too has caused problems with players getting ahead of themselves as to where they sit in terms of their careers as professional footballers. However once again that is part of the development process, teaching players to be self confident, but not arrogant.

Having called the game on the radio yesterday we were astounded to see the players still surging forward looking for a second goal in injury time, instead of trying to keep possession, and run the clock down. This was the football the national team used to play ten years ago, and it cost them dearly.

Instead of running the clock down they lost possession and the Mariners counter-attacked and should have equalised. When asked why they had not run the ball to the corners, the players advised that the coach has told them not to do this, and that he urges them to search for another goal.

Surely part of the development of a player is to teach them how to hold onto a one goal lead in a tight game?

Yesterday they survived, but it would be a cruel and foolish way to lose the Grand final should they get there.

Attacking Development
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2 thoughts on “Attacking Development

  • January 4, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Thank you for your comments. Totally agree that it can be equally dangerous, but it depends on which area of the park you decide to keep possession.

    Central Coast did not score on this occassion and teh Glory survived.

    We were in fact praising the coach, on what has been a great season and the football being played has been at times excellent. Yesterday’s game being a cse in point with some sublime moments of flowing football.

    We were simply asking the question as part of these young players development should they not be taught how to close out a game?

    It is a vital part of the game to learn not so much in a league season, but essential in knock out competitions.

  • January 4, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    Holding posession without the goal of scoring can be equally as dangerous as attacking and exposing yourself to the counter-attack.

    It’s easy to criticise a team from the sideline so I applaud Gareth Navens decision to not hold the ball in the corner. Had Central Coast not scored, or had we scored a second we would be praising a coach and a team that refuses to stop playing even when the game is in the bag. Instead they’ve conceded and you’re asking questions of their tactics.

    At the end of the day, attacking only leaves you open to the counter attack, it doesn’t directly cause goals. It’s the players responsibility to react to a counter attack and shut it down. It is an equally valuable lesson to them to realise how important it is to keep their defensive concentration in the late stages of a game when the opponent has nothing to lose.

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