Can a soccer player be "made" to be a star?

Discussion in 'Youth & HS Soccer' started by nandoal28, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. nandoal28

    nandoal28 Member

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    If not sure how many of you caught the ESPN film, The Marinovich Project this past week. For those not familiar, in short documents a father who trys to make is son into an NFL quarterback from an early age.

    My question is, can a soccer player be made? What steps would need to be taken from what age?


  2. Bird1812

    Bird1812 New Member

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    This is a nuture versus nature question. Here's one person that believes in nuture.

    "In my opinion not everyone can become an outstanding soccer player but the majority of people can. Many people in the game today, or ex-soccer players, may disagree with this statement, but it is my belief that soccer players, even great soccer players, are made and not born. The important consideration is nuture not nature. Of course it goes without saying that certain genetic attributes are required. Good neuromuscular co-ordination, skill, good physiology, good physical characteristics (especially strength and speed), good psychological characteristics (determination, bravery, aggression, decision making), good vision (especially peripheral), the necessary intelligence to be fully able to understand the game, spatial awareness, etc. But the majority of these qualities can be developed using a training program that meets the requirements of the game and matches the needs of the individual."

    "The ideal soccer player should be technically brilliant, tactically astute and a fantastic athlete, but no one is perfect. The soccer "Greats" - Matthews, Kopa, Seeler, Puskas, Gento, Suarez, Garrincha, Pele, Cruyff, Maradona, Platini, Laudrup, Romario, and even Di Stefano (who only became a phenomenon when he ran less and thought more), became so because of their talent, ability and skill. Their game was never based on physical prowess. I would go further, in order to compensate for their physical imperfections, many all time "Greats" worked on their game to develop extraordinary skill in order to compete against and outwit bigger and stronger players. On the other hand, outstanding athletes, however much they try, don't always make it as outstanding soccer players."
    - Laureano Ruiz
  3. rhrh

    rhrh Member

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    If you catch the end of the story, it ain't pretty.
  4. elessar78

    elessar78 Moderator Staff Member

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    As a coach, no I cannot make someone into a star alone.

    I believe I can teach them the different skills, how to read the game, ideas about the game, motivate them to train and study. I can even put them "in the right places" so they get noticed by the right people. Ultimately, it falls on the shoulder of the individual.

    I don't have the quote, but the Barca youth director believes there is something innate in, not just the great ones, but the ones who become good professionals. I don't believe people are born with these things, but that they are exposed to it at an early enough age that people struggle to explain it as anything other than "they always had it".

    It's a combination of factors need to come together at the correct times: good coaching at the correct ages, "innate" ability, good support systems,


  5. uvahoos

    uvahoos Member

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    No elite athlete at any sport can be made a "star" without complete dedication and inner drive from the athlete him or herself. Read any article or book about almost anyone on the USMNT or USWNT and you will discover a player who was fanatically driven to spend almost every waking moment with a soccer ball. Parents can't force that or it will not end well or healthy. Most of these parents were simply there to encourage or support because the kids themselves wanted to eat, breathe and live soccer. IF that is not your kid, you will not have a soccer "star."
  6. YourSoccerMentor

    YourSoccerMentor New Member

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    Yes! One Hundred Percent.

    Whatever you want to achieve depends on how hard you are willing to work.

    Anything is possible if you educate yourself and put in the work necessary.It really comes down to how bad you want it.

    So... How Bad Do You Want It!?

    You need to read my Free Soccer Training Guide - watch this video to get started:


    Become A Better Soccer Player


    Best of Luck. Keep me posted on your progress.
  7. YourSoccerMentor

    YourSoccerMentor New Member

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    Yes! One Hundred Percent.

    Whatever you want to achieve depends on how hard you are willing to work.

    Anything is possible if you educate yourself and put in the work necessary.It really comes down to how bad you want it.

    So... How Bad Do You Want It!?

    You should take a look at this video. This is a training guide designed to help players make big improvements. There is also a free training guide you can get started with if you don't want to make the investment right away.

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vq8P4ojBgQw&feature=related"]Become A Better Soccer Player[/ame]

    Best of Luck. Keep me posted on your progress.
  8. Ottoparts

    Ottoparts New Member

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    Yes, with a ton of work. But without a love of the game, you will never have the desire to do the work required to be a star. All of the players I have seen develop begin with a kid that is obsessed with soccer, kicking a ball against a wall for hours, taking a soccer ball on vacation, having a closet full of replica jerseys and crying at least once a season when their favourite pro team loses a close one.

    If you have this obsession and some supportive parents, you can be made into a star.
  9. Alessandro10

    Alessandro10 Member

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    Passion, hard work matter, but without the talent,it's all in vain. I've noticed that people really have a tendency to underestimate natural ability. They watch all those commercials with great athletes who say ''work hard, make sacrifices etc.'', but forget that those athletes wouldn't be stars and competing at a high level without their God given talent. I can work all day at my shooting, dribbling, etc. but if I simply don't have it then I won't go very far.
  10. CVAL

    CVAL Member

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    Sometimes heart or effort can overcome lack of god given ability (if given a chance). God given ability without hard work and heart will get you nowhere.

    How many times have you that kid is a great athlete or has all the tools only if.
  11. Izaladna

    Izaladna New Member

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    Isn't a commitment to work hard and having heart to go through a lot of pain and work also a God given characteristic?
    It would mean that some get talent, some heart and commitment to work hard and very few get all above and those become stars. As you cannot teach talent also you cannot force someone to try harder than they are willing to do.
  12. bigredfutbol

    bigredfutbol Moderator Staff Member

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    There's some evidence to suggest that "natural ability" is more a matter of development, and so-called "deep practice" than anything in the DNA.
  13. uvahoos

    uvahoos Member

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    Maybe, but not every person at birth has the DNA to run 100 meters in even 12 seconds or less or innate quickness or the intelligence to "see" the game no matter how much is played or watched. The thread asked what it takes to be a "star," not just very good. A "star" requires natural gifts matched with an obsessive devotion to the sport. Find me one true "star" in any sport that does not match these two qualities.
  14. bigredfutbol

    bigredfutbol Moderator Staff Member

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    I don't think "star" was ever defined here.

    And how good is "very good"? Good enough to be a professional at some level? Good enough to be a useful journeyman in the EPL?
  15. uvahoos

    uvahoos Member

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    Good point- I'll define "star" as the best player or 2 or 3 players on the top level professional teams. Landon Donovon, for example, to me is not a star, but he is someone who has maximed his natural talents with complete dedication and devotion to become a very good professional player.
  16. elessar78

    elessar78 Moderator Staff Member

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    Would you consider Ben Roethlisberger a star? Let's say he is by virtue of him having a couple of Super Bowl rings (same # as Peyton manning). He doesn't display many natural gifts mobility like Michael Vick, accuracy like Drew Brees, and he self admittedly doesn't study as hard as Peyton Manning.
  17. uvahoos

    uvahoos Member

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    Bad example, Rothlisberger absolutely is a star. He has numerous natural gifts- the guy plays QB at 6'5" at least 250 lbs- he is an offensive tackle playing QB with excellent mobility for a big man who is impossible to bring down allowing him to extend plays. He makes great decisions; he has a career QB rating over 92 and usually has a good TD/Int ratio and has a canon for an arm- BTW Manning has one ring to Ben's two. Roth. has a career record of 79-33 very comparable to Manning's 141-67. They are both stars and Hall of Famers. Vick is nowhere near these two. Brees has a 2% higher comp. % but a much worse winning %. Who does study as much as Manning, but it is not how much you study but how well you study and how well you play.
  18. Alessandro10

    Alessandro10 Member

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    Talent cannot me made you either have it or you don't. On the other hand you can grow passion,balls and commitment.
  19. elessar78

    elessar78 Moderator Staff Member

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    I think you misunderstand my point. I'm saying that BR IS a star. But he doesn't display the two criteria you set; great physical tools (aside from size) and obsessiveness to the sport.
  20. bigredfutbol

    bigredfutbol Moderator Staff Member

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    This is not what researchers are learning. Talent, to a large degree, is a product of so-called "deep practice" over time.
  21. Alessandro10

    Alessandro10 Member

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    Even with 24 hours of 24 of ''deep practice'', I won't have Messi's dribbling, Cassano's first touch, Ronaldinho's flair or Laudrup's vision. The players that I have mentioned and all great players for the matter have indeed worked hard but what makes them stars and great is their talent (which yes if you don't work on it you won't go very far,but if you don't have it then it's pointless).
  22. elessar78

    elessar78 Moderator Staff Member

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    There are several books right now (Talent is Overrated, Outliers), both cite research in many fields (sports, programming, chess, law, music) that the top performers in each category have 10,000 hours of training, specifically what is called "deliberate practice," to be considered a master in their domain.

    That's just under 3 hours a day of deliberate practice for ten years straight. Now when we put great players under the microscope, take Messi or Tiger Woods for example. They had an innate advantage of who their parents were—not genetics, but interests. Both Messi's dad and Tiger's dad were pretty knowledgeable about their respective sports and from a very young age were tutoring their kids directly or indirectly. By the time these guys were in their mid-teens they were probably already experts in their field.

    What is deliberate practice? In simplest terms, you target weakness in your game and work on it. It can't just all be busy work.

    I hinted on a key aspect of star-dom above. Tiger and Messi had built in coaches. In the book Outliers, the author states that the right conditions need to exist. Bill Gates would not have been Bill Gates if he was born 5 years earlier or later, to rich parents who happened to live near the University of Washington, which had an all night computer lab open all night.

    In soccer terms, does a kid have the right environment? Does he have good coaches at a very young age that know how to teach beginners (big difference)? Somewhere to play and play against challenging opponents? Is there an opportunity to learn and experiment as well as get structured feedback? Is there a soccer culture to stoke the fire, so to speak?

    I don't think there is much to the genetic lottery in our sport. Messi and Maradona, Pele, Zidane... there is nothing particularly astounding about these guys.
  23. Alessandro10

    Alessandro10 Member

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    Jesus not much genetic lottery in sport? If that would be true then everybody who trains intensely would be a Pele, Maradona, Zidane, Messi.
  24. elessar78

    elessar78 Moderator Staff Member

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    ....aaand we missed the point entirely. Thanks for playing.
  25. uvahoos

    uvahoos Member

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    As I beat a dead horse, we will just have to disagree. Roth. does display obsessiveness to the sport- don't be thrown off by his nonchalance.

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