Tactical Awareness - Why many players (even at the top level) lack it?

Discussion in 'Football Forum' started by Lord SInister, Jan 5, 2018.

  1. Jan 5, 2018
    #1

    Lord SInister Full Member

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    Tactical Awareness should be the first thing post basic ball skills(pass, dribble and shot) which player should be apt at, especially in professional level.

    But I have seen players who simply lack these all even at top top level(read EPL).

    Tactical Awareness from some website:

    Tactical insight(awareness) incorporates the anticipation, reading and execution of certain clues that happen during possession and non-possession of that ball.
    In Attack - Player not in possession:

    1) Makes themselves available for the ball, could be diagonal or a crossover run

    2) understands when to offer close support and when to stay away

    3) Recognizes timing to execute "take overs" and "overlaps"

    In Attack - Player in possession:

    1) Shows good peripheral vision, recognizing the correct time to switch the ball

    2) Shows good penetrating vision, allowing them to see and utilize players further down the field

    3) Understand the correct time to play direct or keep possession and shield

    4) Sees opportunities to play "combination patterns"

    In Defense - with the desire to regain possession of the ball, players should understand:

    1) When to step in to intercept the pass

    2) When to mark the opponent tight in order to eliminate a passing opportunity for the opposing team

    3) When, where, and how (posture) to tackle

    4) When to contain your opponent and force them in a specific direction.



    Is this simply ignored, giving more importance to other skills, or players basically lack the heart to compliment the brain.
  2. Jan 5, 2018
    #2

    Red Indian Chief Torn Rubber Thus says Kemo

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    Its the training at a young age
  3. Jan 5, 2018
    #3

    Decomposing In Paris Full Member

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    I don't most people have any idea of the speed at which a classic EPL game is actually played at.
  4. Jan 5, 2018
    #4

    jungledrums Full Member

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    Sorry but I don't believe any of us are qualified to judge 'player awareness' while watching. The objective of the opposition is to unsettle; they're trying to pull their opponent out of position so that players can't judge when to 'step in to intercept a pass' as you've stated.

    At the speed and intensity these pros play out, it may seem on the odd occasion that some are 'tactically unaware', but the fact is, they're literal freaks of nature and anyone who makes it at the top level is unimaginably gifted.
  5. Jan 5, 2018
    #5

    KirkDuyt Full Member

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    This is very easy to criticize from the couch I think. It's like Mike Tyson said; everyone has a plan, untill they get punched in the mouth. Ofcourse with football you don't get punched, but executing all these things is a lot harder when there's a team of guys trying to impede you.
  6. Jan 5, 2018
    #6

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    Dynamic game with a lot of moving parts.

    The best teams are coached on what to do in different situations on the pitch.
  7. Jan 5, 2018
    #7

    jojojo Moderator Staff

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    Yep. Everyone's basically had the same training. To become a top player they have to learn to do it at speed, under pressure, and with all the obvious outlets getting blocked. They also have to learn when not to do it, and instead attempt something unexpected or higher risk or that relies on an opponent's specific weaknesses to increase the odds of the opponent making an error.
  8. Jan 5, 2018
    #8

    11101 Full Member

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    Yes, tactical awareness is just as important and difficult at the level you or I play at as it is in the EPL. The difference is for every increment you move up the football tiers the opposition are there to match you. Every PL player has near flawless awareness they're just doing it against players far better at nullifying it. I intercept a pass from Steve the self employed carpenter, Matic intercepts a pass from Eden Hazard.
  9. Jan 5, 2018
    #9

    Unmutual Banned

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    Most of the things mentioned there are not so much about tactical awareness so much as they are decision making under pressure. Give a player a video of a match and ask them to judge whether to pass or hold, push up or stay back, and they'll make the right decision 99.9% of the time. But in the middle of a game, when you're physically exhuasted, the crowd is screaming and the opposition are bearing down on you, its vastly harder.

    Bear in mind too that most Premier League players get these things right most of the time. If, say, a defender always made the wrong decision about whether to tackle or stand off, they wouldn't be in the Premier League. What we're really talking about is those players who can see beyond the obvious, and turn that, say, 80% success rate into a 90% success rate.
  10. Jan 5, 2018
    #10

    Unmutual Banned

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    People also think tactically with the benefit of a view from the TV camera in the stands. I hate getting pitch level seats at Old Trafford, because I find it really hard to figure out the shape of the game.
  11. Jan 5, 2018
    #11

    Fortitude TV/Monitor Expert Scout

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    I would argue that those players who appear tactically aware and adept at all times are the top percentile even amongst so-called peers. They're the ones who can see a dynamic game with countless variables in a bullet time of sorts and adjust to it in real time without others (managers, coaches, other players etc.) having to say a word to them - they aren't the norm and they stand out in a game because it's something only a select few players can do, and to what degree, will mark them out even further from their fellow pros.

    Added to that, to break rank from specific instructions given to you by your manager and the drills you've worked on all week to fine details, takes things into a different ball park. If you mess up, after going maverick, your position in the team could very well be jeopardised as you're then seen as someone incapable of following instructions or being a team player. It's a fine line which requires trust and acceptance from a players' higher ups for him to truly express himself outside of the team schematics and instructional outline.
  12. Jan 5, 2018
    #12

    RedDevilCanuck Quite dreamy - blue eyes, blond hair, tanned skin

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    The amount of times I see fullbacks getting sucked into the middle and ball watch is staggering.

    Look over your shoulder for feck sakes.
  13. Jan 5, 2018
    #13

    el3mel Full Member

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    It's not something you can develop or acquire imo. You either get it when you're young or you'll always struggle with it as you grow older. Some players have better vision and awareness of their surroundings than others by nature.
  14. Jan 5, 2018
    #14

    jungledrums Full Member

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    It’s a fecking hard position. Stay wide and you allow the oppo to run in the channel between CB and fullback. Come central and you allow the diagonal switch like you mentioned. They get dragged out of position because exceptional players/teams make it so. It’s really not as simple as ‘look over your shoulder’.
  15. Jan 5, 2018
    #15

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    What about the second best team?
  16. Jan 5, 2018
    #16

    BarstoolProphet Full Member

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    They are coached by Moyes.
  17. Jan 5, 2018
    #17

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    The second best team behind the best teams?
  18. Jan 5, 2018
    #18

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    Don’t mind me. Just a glib one liner aimed at the idea that Mourinho and his coaching staff spend hours drilling our defence and leave all our attacking players to their own devices.
  19. Jan 5, 2018
    #19

    Gio 7 times Redcafe Draft Winner

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    Yeah. A lot of armchair fans probably don't appreciate just how little time and space there is at pitch level in the professional game.
  20. Jan 5, 2018
    #20

    diplomat Banned

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    It has to be connected with the manager and his staff, since tactics and strategy are one of their top priorities - the job basically revolves around it.

    If players knew what to do in every situation and for every different game, what would be the point of having someone in charge of them, training them everyday and monitoring their progress?
  21. Jan 5, 2018
    #21

    Keeps It tidy Hates Messi

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    Yep.
  22. Jan 5, 2018
    #22

    adexkola Arsenal supporter

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    It's why a lot of offensive/defensive coordinators in the NFL sit up in the booths, so they can convey spatial perspectives of the game to the field level coaches and players.
  23. Jan 5, 2018
    #23

    WR10 Correctly predicted France to win World Cup 2018

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    Combination of a few things really. First of, players that are at ‘top level’ have had ‘natural’ talent growing up in their smaller teams and could get away with just their pure skills. Another is just a general lack of average overall intelligence. Yes it’s stereotypical but on AVERAGE level of intelligence is not that high.
  24. Jan 5, 2018
    #24

    RooneyLegend Full Member

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    Poor coaching
  25. Jan 5, 2018
    #25

    Fortitude TV/Monitor Expert Scout

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    Don't buy that.

    Superior minds make inferior ones look less than they are, which is why they separate themselves from the pack in any profession. The players that can break from the ordinary are special because they can see and process the game in ways that cannot be taught, which is why they become superstars over a career and are deemed practically unstoppable for the majority of their careers, or at least until they come up against others who have minds on par with them as well as the attributes to stop them.

    Even if you strip certain players down to just movement, timing and positioning for their respective spots on the pitch, there's a chasm between them and the lesser players, you add skills and ability on top, and it's practically an unbridgeable gap.
  26. Jan 5, 2018
    #26

    Greck Full Member

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    Can relate to those saying it's easier said than done. Passes are so much easier to see from a top down perspective than when you're in the thick of the action with an almost 2D view.

    Having this level of tactical awareness at the highest level is a talent by itself.
  27. Jan 5, 2018
    #27

    Bobski Full Member

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    It is an odd thing. Pretty easy to look at some of the players at the lesser PL teams and think they are not up to much. In isolation they are amazing players, just think of the number of young boys who play the game growing up, no sport in the world is as competitive. 200th best footballer in the world against the 7th best rower, who is the more accomplished sportsman?

    I play in the summers against Irish league players, most of them could not even sniff a league 2 trial but they take the piss. That is up against guys who have played for years at decent amateur levels, in good shape, competitive personalities.
  28. Jan 5, 2018
    #28

    kouroux 45k posts to finally achieve this tagline

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    If you watched Calum Chambers versus Chelsea, it is pretty easy to see how clueless he is from a tactical POV
  29. Jan 5, 2018
    #29

    breakout67 Full Member

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    Most players are tactically aware; but when you are pumped up with adrenaline your emotions can cloud your judgment.

    The best players can control their emotions and assess situations rationally. The best players are predictably good; they have a system by which they play. If X happens I do Y, If A happens I do B. They don't make it up as they go along.
  30. Jan 5, 2018
    #30

    NoPace Full Member

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    Which is weird if you play at all, because whenever I play one level above my own to fill in for a team one league up in amateur football (! where the best players are ex-American college players and MLS academy washouts I'm overwhelmed. Prem football must be insane.
  31. Jan 5, 2018
    #31

    breakout67 Full Member

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    I've watched a League one footballer run circles around a whole team like he was Messi in a local footy tournament. He failed in the Championship.

    The average prem footballer has fitness and technical levels most wouldnt imagine.
  32. Jan 5, 2018
    #32

    padr81 Mr. MoneyBags

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    This guy nailed it I think.