uhlsport USA
"Outstanding keeper instruction. This is a must for goalkeepers and coaches."
—Ottawa Internationals S.C. web site, Ottawa, Canada

Goalkeeping Tips, Tidbits and Random Thoughts

An athlete talking to themsleves during competition is hardly a new phenomenon.... The talk does not have to be vocal. By merely thinking you are talking to yourself and sending a message.
   -- Tony DiCicco, Goalkeeper Soccer Training Manual

If you have a question, comment or rebuttal you'd like to see addressed here, send me email. I will post your mail to the blog at my discretion unless you specify otherwise.

More than football

To paraphrase Phil Jackson: There's more to life than football. There's also more to football than football.

West Ham keeper Rob Green went to Africa this summer for a charity that uses football to get its message across.

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The most common mistakes

What are the technical breakdowns that lead to the most goals given up by goalkepeers? Most people would probably say that the problem is with the hands when the keeper lets and easy one get through, or perhaps with the diving or parrying technique. I don't think so... in fact, I'd put "hands" third on the list of mistake-prone areas after these two:
  • Footwork. Many goals are allowed before the ball ever reaches the goalkeeper. With only split seconds to react, a keeper must be in the ready position before the shot is struck, if possible. It's hard to react and make a save when you are still moving. Footwork is also at fault for many diving and parrying miscues and for mishandled crosses—if the proper footwork isn't executed from the start, the resulting save will be much, much more difficult.
  • Eyes. It's the simplest thing in the world: watch the ball all the way into your hands until it's secured. It's also the simplest thing to forget. Take your eye off the ball a second too soon to look upfield, or look at that charging forward instead of the soccer ball, and the ball could be in the net.
So, my saying for keepers is, "Feet, Eyes, Hands". Get the feet set, have good footwork; focus your attention completely on the ball; then attack the ball with your hands.

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