Be warned, this isn’t a traditional soccer coaching book. There will be no sketches of drills and plays. There is no real talk of formation, or shape and pattern. When you scan a page you won’t find bullet points fine-detailing the art of controlling a football or where to place players for a corner kick. These are the technical and tactical sides of the game that are your traditional sources of information as a coach.
They are detailed in plenty of resources elsewhere. With this book, however, your ability to instruct the tactical and technical components of the game will improve and your players’ skill in executing your tuition will develop if you build its messages into your coaching. This is because this book is intended to drive your mindset as a coach, the mentality of your players and the culture of your coaching practice.
Great coaching, a player’s ability to understand and learn, and a player’s expression of bodily movement in performance starts with these qualities. To me mindset and culture are analogous to the importance of soil and water to a plant. A plant won’t grow and bloom the most beautiful flowers if you don’t use the right soil type and if you fail to water it on a regular basis.
Similarly, your players won’t develop and perform if you don’t have the right coaching culture in place and the right strategies to develop both your mindset and the mindset of your players. Mindset and coaching culture are the hidden mediators of success as a coach.
They are the silent determinants of improvement and development. To me if there is such a thing as ‘the secret’ of coaching it is ‘Mindset and Coaching Culture’.