Communication on the Soccer Field

Updated: May 27

"For as long as I can remember, as a player I was always a player that didn’t lack confident belief when I had the ball. Thinking back at it I was mean to my teammates when they didn’t pass it to me when I shouted for it. As a professional and now a coach the reason for communication is not to be selfish, but rather helpful. As I matured I figured out that what my Dad was trying to say was when you communicate during a match make sure it is these 3 components to proper communication in a game."

1. Informative – “When in a match and you are in a position of involvement either offensively supporting the player with the ball or defensively supporting the player that is pressuring / defensively telling nearest defender to pressure or slide over and mark this player or that.”

2. Tone / Volume - “It’s important to communicate in a manner that is heard but without any ill or aggressive intentions. Yes, when I played professionally I would still get on players, but after all if I couldn’t back it up playing I wouldn’t have scolded my teammates and the referees so much. Each team has a few of those that is sometimes in some ways allowed, but it still remains not a positive way to get to your objective. Some players don’t respond well to criticism. In fact, many referees too.” Just make sure it’s loud so the one that your communicating with hears it. Too many of our students at CGSA struggle with this. There is no such thing as asking for a ball by saying “BALL!” Everyone in the world knows what that round thing is. Speaking clearly what you are informatively saying aloud. Such as: when you want the ball Yell “Give it, or YES FEET, HOOK IT (meaning half turn driving it up field into channel, or NOW meaning put the ball over the top so I can run on to it.)

3. Timely – When communicating you need to be informative, loud, and early. Too many players I watch today don’t talk at all, don’t engage in the game, which leads into not getting passes delivered on time or at all, and when they talk they say meaningless mumbo jumbo that don’t make any sense to a footballer. Lastly when I observe the players today they are not loud and don’t speak their meanings with appropriate volume. Coaches can do more for the game of football / soccer by teaching these sorts of components so that their players will be more than just 11 athletes running around in a defragmented group without organization and rhythm. Every team just by training their vocal skills can raise their levels not just a little bit but enhance their chances on winning trophies, and individually showcase their abilities and enthusiasm / passion for the beautiful game.

Advice: "Study Soccer terminology, and above all train every day with the ball, so your skills improve to a level where you are very confident, and not subdued into a shell of nerves. Good luck."

"I played with Clint for a 6 month period and then a short spell again for a few months, and even in a culture that is nothing but football, and even though he's Welsh he was raised in California. Man can he get on players. Clint was quite young around 20 and if he didn't get the ball right away he would even shout offensive remarks to the club 1st team players, many were big internationals, but the lads respected him as a player that should have the ball, so he can create. It's important to be committed or into the match during it. The same goes for training. With out that committed and alert attitude mistakes come in and the boss notices who's committed and who's not."

Jason Gummer

Caridiff City Football Club "English Football League"

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