What is your advice to your striker on what to do that moment he is played through one on one with the goalkeeper?

Whether it be advice to your son, or advice to one of your strikers in the team you coach, sometimes just that single bit of advice can make a difference that will decide the direction this boys career takes and his destiny.

Now for any footballer remembering back to his younger years, and how he felt that first time one of his team mates played that perfect threw ball he had been yearning for, at the same time as "dreading".

What do i do? Which way do i go? And despair, before he could even begin his run towards from the half way line to the goalkeeper that brutish defender stepped in front of him from the side and took the ball away like candy.

But what happened? What did the kid do wrong?

Here is the first thing a kid put threw one on one needs to do.

The first thing kid needs to do is step in to the path of the nearest defender and make sure that his body is between the defender and the direction the kid is intending to take (which i assume is towards goal), and the defender now either needs to bring the kid down, and get a red card, or has to go to the left, or right, and the kid needs to know that this is countered simply by moving himself in the exact same direction the big defender just moved, thus keeping the defender on his back and heels, as opposed to being able to make a tackle from the side.

It really is as simple as that.


Do you understand how simple it is?

Kids that were lucky enough at a young age, to have this realisation whilst sat at home, became known as mesmerising entertainers with wizard like ball skills.

In fact, it is very simple.

Update 2:

The other thing is, the race "to the ball".

Again, the second that ball has been played over the head of the defender, the "first thing that striker needs to do", is what?

He needs to "step between the defender and the ball" and take the exact same route to the ball the defender would have took, rather than get himself involved in a race to the ball from two different angles, which the defender is always going to win, with the advantage of his sliding tackle.

Update 3:

This is the difference between a striker that is put through, and stays put through, as opposed to a striker that is put through, but fails to even win the race for the ball, let alone succeed in getting to the ball, and staying in front of the defender all the way to the moment he is ready to pull the trigger.

It is the difference between Maradona being put clean through, and a post man being put clean through

Update 4:

I appreciate all answers.

And the reason i ask a question aswell as provide my own answer, is that there may be other people interested in the finer points of football that know little bits of advice that can completely turn a player from pulling a cart to a deadly striker. A simple bit of advice, tip, or realisation.

But i think the best players in the world probably do spend a lot of time playing things out in their head, at it is actually not all just "instinct".

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1 Answer

  • Adam
    Lv 6
    1 month ago
    Favorite Answer

    Why post questions that you answer yourself?

    The difference is fundamentally practice. Ronaldo and Maradonna instinctively knew what to do without having conscious thought because they'd been in that situation through practice thousands of times. They trained enough so they could analyze the whole situation and make the best judgement in a split second. It's what elite sportsman do. Schumacher in F1, LeBron in basketball, Brady in NFL. They repeat enough of the game so most of it becomes instinctive and there is no need to think

    Edit - When i say instinct, its an easier way of saying they can factor in all the situation around them and make the right decision pretty much instantaneously. It's speed of thinking. In a 1 on 1 situation, if the player hesitates or spends too long thinking about where he is going to put it, the longer the keeper has to react, by making the decision quickly it limits the time for the keeper to react. I agree with you that most of sport is mental.

    Different sport but listen to some of Ross Brawns takes on Michael Schumacher, his insight as to how Schumacher worked is brilliant on this. Also on a football side of it, some of Graham Hunters interviews with ex players go more in depth

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