The key to offensive success in soccer is off-ball movement. Making offensive runs off the ball is what opens up space to exploit the defense. No team will ever be successful at a high level of soccer if the whole team just watches the player with the ball.
After a particularly rough game last season, our coach was talking to us in the locker room, and he asked why nobody was making any off ball movements. We sat in silence. He asked if it was because we didn’t know where to go. Someone nodded their head.
After that our coach said something that really resonated with me. He said, “Even if you don’t know where to make your runs, make them anyway. If you make the wrong runs we can correct them, but if you just stand there you’ll never learn anything.”
I don’t think he realized just how powerful those words were. Our team began making lots of mistakes, but we quickly improved our off-ball movement, and we ended up finishing 2nd in our league. More importantly it helped me develop a different mindset towards failure.
It made me realize that failure isn’t bad. Making mistakes is ok as long as you learn from them.
Many foreign language learners try to become perfect at the language they’re learning before ever going out and speaking with native speakers. Their ego is too concerned they’ll make mistakes. And they probably will. But in those mistakes lies the quickest road to improvement. You can’t adjust your runs if you never make any.
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