Exhibition Game: Guelph 1 at Kitchener 1, News, U14 Boys A, Boys Rep (Kitchener Soccer Club)

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Exhibition Game: Guelph 1 at Kitchener 1
Submitted By Mark Rebellato on Sunday, May 5, 2019
With 22 sleeps to our first regular season game, we took to our home field against the Guelph Gryphons on a cloudy but pleasant Saturday afternoon.

With Roman, Filip and Naoto missing on this day, our roster of 14 started off strong and immediately dominated possession of the ball.  Coaches were content with our ability to maintain ball possession overall.  Coaches agree that we likely maintained possession of the ball for nearly 70% of the game.

That said, with the amount of ball possession that  we maintained, we somewhat struggled to generate enough chances and we should be coming out with wins when we control play.  This seemed to be a result of the following:

1) Too many extra touches: We have talented players who have fantastic moves, however some of us (and we know who) seem to want to make an extra play rather than have the right awareness of teammates around them to make the the easy pass and move in to space to create opportunities and increase our chances to score.  We all agree, and we know where the best chances are to score is but if we can't get in there it will be hard to be successful.  The other reason why we take too many touches is because teammates are not loud enough in demanding the ball, and we all agree we still have a lot of work to do with communication.  Players on the bench were louder than players on the field...the good news about that is we know players have it in themselves to communicate, now they just need to do it when they play.

2) Strikers moving off defenders:  We have talented and fast strikers who know how to hit a ball.  Our strikers need to move off defenders to put themselves in areas they will find success.  Receiving balls with defenders on, is not going to help us improve those chances.  This comes with scanning open areas and communicating with teammates to ensure they know where we are and where we are moving to.  We will to work in this more this week.

3) Finishing: Game play saw us hit cross bars, miss the net entirely and simply not hit the ball hard enough.  Players need to spend more time working on skill play outside of practice.  We have spent some time striking the ball and there are players who simply hit the ball too softly.  Coaches will discuss how we could work with players on finishing, however players simply need to spend time off the field ensuring they can hit the ball effectively not to mention hitting with their opposite foot.

Milos scored our lone goal on a nice through ball from Ayman.  The attack principles of play that were effective to help us score was depth and support along with getting our head up to make a nice play.

Guelph found the back of our net later in the second half on a nice shot by one of their strikers. The principles of play that broke down here to allow the goal was not enough pressure and lack of depth.  As much as it was a nice strike, pressure was absent.

All in all, we played well but will need to work on both sides of the ball (Attack and Defend) in our two training sessions this week as we head to Tillsonburg next week for WRSL's Kickoff Cup!

Please be at practice this week even if injured.  You need to know strategies and playing time at Kick-off will be impacted by this week's attendance.

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