Wherever you go in the world of football, there are dozens of models, tactical approaches, football philosophies and playing styles. The subjective nature of the game is what makes it so exciting, often debated, unpredictable and enjoyable to coach.

The PDP team have often discussed ‘moments of the game’ in various webinars, Q&As and Masterclass Discussions with expert guests. For coaches learning their craft, these moments can be a useful guide to create a theme or focus, but in truth, one moment doesn’t come without the other.

For example, controlling possession can look very different across different areas of the pitch, or based on opposition behaviours. If a team decides to press, the opportunities for action presented to the players in possession are very different to those when a team decides to drop deep and defend in a block, therefore players need to have the tools to play through, around or over based on the challenge they see.

If the moment in focus is defending, the solutions the defender may have to find will be dictated entirely by the individual, unit or team in front of them and how they attack. Our job is to try to support young players to find solutions to problems posed within the game.

Recently, Lee Hodge, Head of Coaching at Plymouth Argyle AFC has joined the PDP team as a Coaching Advisor and PDP Community Leader.

Lee has also contributed some practical sessions focussed on four moments of the game to support your players:

These sessions will provide you with some ideas to implement or adapt in your environment.

If you want to discuss them with Lee, make sure you sign up and log in to the PDP Community to send him a message or post a comment/question. Lee is on the PDP Community answering questions and supporting PDP Members every week.

Three things to consider.

  1. Is your session design representative of the game?
  2. Does your practice present opportunities for players to solve problems, or are you giving solutions?
  3. What steps do you take when designing your session?

One thing for you to try this week.

Set yourself a coaching challenge. Can you design a small sided game that allows players to find a solution to a football problem without explicit instruction?

One critical resource on the topic.

Check out one of our most popular webinars of all time with Ben Bartlett on Session Design. This event was attended by almost 1000 coaches live and has always been a popular resource on the PDP platform, delivered by one of the best coach educators in the world.

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PDP Members get exclusive access to our PDP Community – where coaches share ideas, ask questions and support each other. You will also get access to all PDP content (including session plans), and exclusive member-only offers.

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