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U16/U18 - 'Training to Compete'

U16/U18-  11v11
Goalkeepers - YES        
Throw-ins – YES            
Offside - YES            
Game Time: 2x40/45 mins


Things to consider:

As coaches we have the freedom to choose our elaborate way of coaching and instilling the values which reflect the way our teams play the game of soccer. My teams will adopt a contemporary playing style and is implemented at U11 and utilized by all senior age groups. At U13, teams across the country will start playing 11v11 soccer. This is an age where participants are developmentally ready to play on a full field, increasing spatial relations where emphasis starts to switch to tactical mastery.

At U16 and above, we start to focus on developing winners through a growth mindset. We encourage players to express themselves, accept challenges and continue to develop their personal character.

Developmental focus: ‘Training to Compete'


1) Tactical - 40% – Requirement. Enforce position specific training and formations/ways to play is needed

2) Psychological - 25% – An important requirement – challenging players to think/mentally engage with soccer related concepts

3) Technical - 25% - Challenge the players to master the ball individually/collectively. Focus should be on ball mastery skills and retention. Passing/receiving/heading. Allow the kids time to play with players in their positions (functional training)
4) Physical - 10% -  Keep the players moving, active and engaged as much  as possible
5) Social - 0% – Make it fun, enjoyable and continue to develop the ‘love-affair’ environment for the players

U16/U18: Team Tactics - Advanced (The unit, the function, the team)

As players maximize their technique and passing range, their tactical vision continues to expand. Players are accustomed to the 11v11 environment and should be able to manipulate a contemporary style of play on a regular basis, both in training and games.

Teams will look to keep possession for long periods.


Tom's Recommendations:


  1. Train three/four times per week (60-75 mins) with focus on ‘Whole Group’

  2. Complete 4+ evaluations per player/ per season

  3. Play a contemporary style - See personal philosophy

*The above information combines theories and ideologies of the NSCAA Player Development Plan & LTAD* 

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