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State DOC Blog

A blog from Jacob Daniel, Georgia Soccer's State Director of Coaching. If you have comments, questions, or topic suggestions, please send them to


In Search of an American Playing Style

Jacob Daniel- State DOC

There is considerable debate among coaches and fans about the American playing style and how to create a playing style that will bring success at the international level.  The following two quotes describe the play of an American team. The first one is from a Ridge Mahoney article on Soccer America on the national team game versus Ukraine:

“On a few occasions the midfield clicked to create effective attacking moves, but seldom was the USA able to hold the ball to establish tempo and make Ukraine chase”

The second quote is from a technical report by the coaching staff of one of our Region III Boys team following an international trip:

“We turned the ball over far too easily and often due to poor technique, poor support position, poor decision making……This caused us to defend more than we would have liked….We could not establish a rhythm and flow to our game due to too many turnovers.  But in spite of these deficiencies, we battled and defended well and had some good individual moments.”

These quotes succinctly describe the state of our game in international terms.  We have been struggling to possess the ball ever since I can remember.  This brings a lot of questions to my mind:  Can our youth clubs make a difference?  Does it all depend on what our youth coaches are teaching our players?  Is it fair to expect our youth clubs to make a serious commitment to teaching our players to possess the ball?  Is it the responsibility of our youth clubs to prepare players for the international arena?  Is US Soccer doing all it can to help the process along?

Thoughts anyone?


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