Football Technical Lab

Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

10,000 Hours – Deliberate Practice – Opportunities – Relative Age Effect (RAE)

Outliers was published in 2008, it gained immediate success debuting at number 1 on the bestseller list at the New York Times.

Malcolm Gladwell conveys an intriguing investigation into the ‘Outlier’, which in simplistic terms is defined as anyone that stands out (an anomaly) from the rest of society.

Using plenty of interesting examples, Gladwell, in essence, attempts to dispel the myth that success is primarily based on talent, rather highlighting effort, application, opportunities, timing and luck as crucial elements of success.

Albeit not his own theory, he uses the 10,000 hours principal to quantify just how long it takes to become an expert or master at something. For instance, in football this equates to around 20 hours per week for 10 years. Read more

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The Myth of the Two-Footed Footballer (Part 1)

There is a certain mystique surrounding Two-Footed footballers, the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Eden Hazard, Cristiano Ronaldo, Pavel Nedved, Pedro, Wesley Sneijder just to name a few. These rare gifted players are in high demand, they tend to earn more wages and are commonly used as role models by coaches to spur on the next generation of elite to keep working on their non-preferred foot.

However, when you dig a little, the facts tell a different story.

This series of articles will attempt to unravel the mystery behind the two-footed player, delve into the nature v nurture debate, examine the statistics, probe the role of the brain in masking two-footedness, investigate the opinions of coaches and ultimately decide whether there is such a thing as a two-footed player!

Read more

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The Eyes – Andres Iniesta and David Villa

Football is often regarded as a simple science, where play is broken down into key moments, such as player A passing the ball to player B.

In this footage, the technical coach may notice such key elements as Andrés Iniesta’s evasiveness, close ball control, balance when moving with the ball,  speed and angle of the “key” pass, as well as David Villa’s scanning, positioning, timing of his run, footwork and balance when striking the ball. Read more

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