Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Learning From Spain's 4-0 Victory In Euro 2012

Spain made history being the first team to win three successive major international tournaments. Spain played perfectly in the championship match.  I try to tape championship games in all sports.There is always a wealth of knowledge to be learned and shared. The key coaching components of the game where:

Spain used dominant ball control skills to maintain possessing of the ball 60 percent of the time. The team that has possession of the ball the most, usually wins. The ability to maintain possession, signifies high technical & tactical proficiency. It makes sense to always be working on increasing your teams abilities to maintain possession. Your players will improve their skills and the team will win more games.

Andres Iniesta of Spain is the great model to demonstrate running skills with the ball. He has a great skill set of:

  • Fakes
  • Change of Direction
  • Stops & Starts
  • Ball Protection Skills

Spain Passing:
  • Spain made 89.6% successful passes in championship match
  • Spain averaged 731.8 passes per game in Euro 2012 
  • 88.7%  of Spain's passes were successful in Euro 2012

Italy Passing Numbers:
  • 88.7% success  in Euro 2012
  • 497.1 passes per game  in Euro 2012

Xavi Hernandez completed over 800 passes at Euro 2012. Xavi is one of the best passers of all time. Against Ireland, he completed 133 passes in one game. Xavi always chooses the right type of pass. His passes are always made at the right time, at the right pace and to the right place. I compare Xavi Hernandez passing abilities to the great Wayne Gretzky.

  • Spain had the ability to receive passes and controls the ball in tight spaces
  • The passes were made with both feet 
  • The passes were made with inside, outside parts of the foot
  • The passes were received with both feet
  • The passes were  received  with inside, outside parts of foot

    Hockey requires that the players made passes at the right time, at the right speed and at the right place. Hockey requires players to pass, receive passes and controls the puck in tight spaces; Make forehand and backhand passes; Receive passes on the forehand and backhand.

    SHOTS EURO 2012:
    The two best teams had the most shots & rebounds.
    • Spain 99 shot on goal
    • Italy  86 shot on goal

    Spain defense provided good pressure on the ball throughout the game. When they lost the ball, someone was always pressuring to get it back. Spain was tactical and technical excellent on defense. 
    • Spain was superior on transition defense
    • Spain only gave up 12 shots on goal at Euro 2012

    Goal-keeper Iker Casillas & Spain had nine successive shut outs in tournament knockout games. The combination of great goalkeeping & defense win championships.

    The principles, techniques and tactics described in this article relate to both hockey and soccer. It is worthy of every hockey coach to study the work that Spain has done over the past ten year to develop their athletes. 

    Power Thoughts:

    "It doesn't matter who scores the points, it's who can get the ball to the scorer" - Larry Bird

    Related Videos & Teaching Points:

    Jun 29, 2012

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