Composed, clever & Competitive!
Composed: The ability to receive a pass under pressure with the awareness and confidence to stay on, or release the ball at the right time.
Clever: The ability to make successful decisions and be creative in varying scenarios.
Competitive: The technical, physical and mental strength to compete in individual duals for the team’s success.
Ensuring enthusiasm through ball contact time, success, knowledge and social interaction. With enjoyment and belonging players have an increased enthusiasm to play, the more they play the more touches and contact time they’ll gain. At different stages of that contact time we develop players using various objectives, pressure’s and details, ensuring the right levels of intensity and encouraging them to improve themselves plus others around them.
The 8BY8 future player:
Has a desire to work hard for theirs and the team’s success.
Plays with a high intensity and has the ability to receive and pass the ball under pressure.
Makes good decisions through game awareness and composure.
Has a tactical understanding of space.
Has a controlled aggression to win every battle.
Will create and excite with every opportunity..
Stages of learning and how we develop
This early years learning is all about the most imaginative introduction to football possible. Our main aim is to create an environment filled with fun, social interaction and play to ensure the enthusiasm to return and get more touches of the ball, ideally with their feet.
At the 4-5 ages enthusiasm, play and social interaction are still the main aims of every session, ensuring maximum touches of the ball and high success rates with every practice. Fundamental football based movement and evasion games without the ball are always used to start a session. It’s at these ages where we start to encourage players to manipulate the ball under control at speed, no real instruction as to how but to let them experiment and learn what does and doesn’t work through specifically structured play. We also start to introduce and teach elements of match play, pitch areas and terminology. Where possible we introduce 2 v 2s, 3 v 3s and small matches.
Players are just starting to get a good understating of the game and rules. Always ensuring the enjoyment levels are at their optimum and continuing the evasion warm ups is essential, but now we also start introducing more specific instructions and details into ‘how’ to do the various disciplines; dribbling/dummies and feints, turning, passing and striking the ball, adding harder challenges and reducing the success rates making achievement now something to work for. 1 v 1s 2 v 2s, upto 4 v 4s all a major part of any session. At U6s we look to get the players their first matches in the best possible environment.
Pre Academy Phase
For the players who’ve been with us for a while as they embark on Junior football this is where we really start to see a huge development and the beginnings of understanding space, how to create it & how to deny it. We also starting to hone in and teach more detail into the ‘how’ and the ‘why’ for basic techniques ie; how we strike the ball with our laces, and why would we use that technique or how to drop the shoulder and why, building on confidence, understanding and decision making. Once comfortable we can also push these ages to try to achieve at a higher tempo and under pressure. Everything is still lots of fun bit with added competitiveness, camaraderie and encouraging a desire to win.
AGE 9 - 11
The players should now well and truly be accustomed to competitive junior football. At these ages we start to really detail how, why and when. Receiving the ball under different types of pressure a major focus along with ball manipulation at a very high tempo. Plenty of touches of the ball under different levels of intensity, and ensuring the 1 v 1s and 2 v 2 duals. Body mechanics, control and fitness now to be considered for session plans. Expectations and demands are increased, we also start encouraging players to take responsibilities for decisions and ask them to try things, be creative and learn from outcomes. Winning 1 v 1 duals is now majorly important. Learner behaviour and respectful conduct a huge part of every session too. Certain players will be in or around professional academies, we have sessions to support or try and open doors for the journey. Our coaching for this age group will have similar topics and style to that of a professional club programme. Ensuring desire, enthusiasm and a love of the game always top of the priority list.