I want to work with 10 more players during the summer months and place them in Europe

Like most young boys growing up in Northern Ireland I always wanted to be a professional footballer. By age 14, I was playing in our clubs youth team on Saturday mornings and playing for the mens team in the afternoon. If I wasn’t training or playing I was out playing on the street with my mates or practicing alone. My mother still jokes to this day that there are no family photographs of me without a ball!

 

THERE ARE OVER 400 CANADIAN PLAYERS PLAYING OVERSEAS – BE ONE OF THEM!  

Our family moved to Canada when I was 17 but still I kept my dream alive of playing professionally one day. The practicing paid off and in 1985 I travelled back to England to train with Swindon Town. At the time they were managed by former Scottish international player Lou McCari. He was tremendous with me and I went right into training with the first team on day one. Unfortunately, life does not always turn out the way you intend it and after 10 days my dream to play professionally was over. I tore ligaments in my ankle but worse news was to follow . My injuries during the previous 3 years were as a result of a back injury that I had sustained as a teenager. My body would be unable to withstand the physical demands of professional football.

 

Since then I have been passionate during my coaching career to help ensure that young players in Canada can pursue the same dream that I had. I am very proud to have contributed along the way to helping some players play internationally for their country, being identified by professional clubs in Europe, playing for their province and pursuing US Scholarship opportunities

 

 

 

In 2018, I will be placing 20 players in training and playing opportunities at professional clubs in UK, Italy, Germany and Spain. I have the capacity to train another 10 players for these types of opportunities by following a proven model of development:

STEP 1: Identification: Assessment and benchmarking of players based on European Academy Standards

STEP 2: Intensive 3 month training program

STEP 3: Training/ Assessment in Europe and placement for players at professional academies (based on levels of ability)

Contact me today and move your soccer dream one step closer to reality!

Yours in Soccer,

Ian McClurg
UEFA A Licensed Coach & Wolves North American Scout
www.ianmcclurglearnperform.com
www.ianmcclurg.com
289-239-9602

Individual Player Development – 5 Tips on how to accelerate your learning and increase your performance

Youth player development is an ongoing process. Young players at academy programs in Europe spend over 10 hours a week developing their technical, tactical, physical and mental performance levels.

Our objective is to assist young North American players reach higher level of performance and challenge young players in Europe for professional playing opportunities and US Scholarships. We hope that our weekly tips help several young players maximize their full potential on their soccer journey .

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technique – What to focus on to play at the highest levels

A new study has confirmed that technical ability is the best predictor of success in soccer.

Read Study 

No player will be able to instantly master all technical aspects of the game without constant practice. In Europe, young players, after age 11, are training 10+ hours per week. In Brazil, young players are spending 12-15 hours/week working on their technical skills.

In North America young players have to supplement their team training with additional training by themselves or with a technical skills coach in order to successfully compete.

Technical Training Video of the week – Dribbling Through Gates with a Tennis Ball 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tactical – Be prepared to press, persist and possess

Young players in North America are not immersed in a vibrant soccer culture like Europe . They have few opportunities to watch top players and teams in action. Growing up in Northern Ireland for example I was able to watch top players like George Best and Johan Cruyff play. Therefore, young players in North America must be students of the game and be able to analyze and learn from games that they watch on the internet or television.

Here is an analysis of the recent Champions League game between Chelsea and Barcelona

Learn More 

Physical – Improve your agility, acceleration and power 

Youth players between the ages of 12-16 typically run an average of 6-9 kilometres a game, with 350-550 metres completed at high intensity. (Arcos, A. Et all, 2015)

Young players can develop this. Here, Leicester City’s Head of Fitness and Conditioning outlines an exercise that is guaranteed to test your agility, acceleration and power.

Learn More

Mental – How to progress from academy level to the professional game 

Youth football in Europe is very highly competetive. Only 180 of the 1.5 million boys who play organized youth football in England will become a Premier League professional player. Here ex-player Joey Barton offers an insight into what is required to successfully move from the academy levels to playing professional.

Learn More

Pathways to the Pros

1V1 Soccer are delighted to announce several new initiatives to provide young players in North America with a clearly defined pathway to train and play at European academies and then attend trials at professional clubs and pursue US Scholarship Opportunities.

As I have been advocating for many years, it is my belief that young North American players can compete at the highest levels. However, it is critical that they participate in the European development models as much as possible. There was a great article by US player Geoff Cameron recently that confirmed this.

Learn More 

Apply at 1v1 Soccer FC now 
Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week.

Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

Individual Player Development – 5 Tips on how to accelerate your learning  and increase your performance

Youth player development is an ongoing process. Young players at academy programs in Europe spend over 10 hours a week developing their technical, tactical, physical and mental performance levels.

Our objective is to assist young North American players reach higher level of performance and challenge young players in Europe for professional playing opportunities and US Scholarships. We hope that our weekly tips help several young players maximize their full potential on their soccer journey .

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technique – What to focus on to play at the highest levels

In the future, the best players will be those who can excel in a fast-paced environment. There will be even greater demands on technique, tactical understanding and physical conditioning.  Players today are faster and cover greater distances than previous generations. Passing combinations are faster and there is an increased importance on controlling possession. More goals are scored through quick counter-attacking play and decision-making is of critical importance.

So what technical skills should young players focus on if they are to reach the higher levels of the game?

Young players should continually work on their dribbling ability, passing and receiving and how to successfully execute individual skills under the pressure of time, space, and an opponent.

-Dribbling: Take risks! Develop your moves to beat an opponent
-Improve your ability to keep possession. Work on shielding, spin turns and changes of speed and direction to get away from opponents
-Receiving: Work on the ability to receive and have a quality 1st touch – when receiving on the ground and in the air. Receiving using all surfaces should be developed
-Shooting: Proper striking technique from different angles should be worked on and taking shots on the volley and half-volley with both feet
-Passing: Proper technique – Laces, Inside, Outside, Short and Long; Crossing
-Heading: Jumping to head
-Tackling: Proper technique, in balance, no fear.

Technical Training Video of the week 

Tactical – Be prepared to press, persist and possess

The modern game is one of flexibility. The game is more fluid than ever and the top teams now deploy “inverted full-backs and wingers”, false number 9s and ball-playing goalkeepers to deal more effectively with retaining possession and winning it back quickly. The game today resembles more and more the sport of basketball where the winning team typically is the one that has managed transitions between attack/defence better.

Learn More 

Physical – Improve your stamina

Interval training is a good training approach to improve stamina. Top players are running between 7 to 9.5 miles per game and it is very important that young players are in a training program that will allow them to reach that level of performance as adults. Players that have not reached puberty should focus on mastering their technical skills and can develop fitness through small-sided games and playing. However, players who have went through puberty can begin to develop their aerobic capacity – see tips from former professional player Scott Parker .

Learn More

Mental – Self Assess your Performance

An important part of youth development is developing the entire person — not just the soccer player. We expect young people to go onto the field of play and make smart, correct decisions by themselves — so it is vital that we begin to develop these qualities early in their development.
When I talk to academy coaches across Europe or professional scouts they place a large emphasis on the psychological attributes of young players when evaluating potential. Is the player self-motivated, taking responsibility for their own development, has a strong mentality to overcome set-backs and do they have a strong capacity to learn?

Learn More

Pathways to the Pros

1V1 Soccer are delighted to announce several new initiatives to provide young players in North America with a clearly defined pathway to train and play at European academies and then attend trials at professional clubs and pursue US Scholarship Opportunities.

As I have been advocating for many years, it is my belief that young North American players can compete at the highest levels. However, it is critical that they participate in the European development models as much as possible. There was a great article by US player Geoff Cameron recently that confirmed this.

Learn More 

 

Apply at 1v1 Soccer FC now 
Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week.

Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

Pathways to the Pro’s

1V1 Soccer are delighted to announce several new initiatives to provide young players in North America with a clearly defined pathway to train and play at European academies and then attend trials at professional clubs and pursue US Scholarship Opportunities.

As I have been advocating for many years, it is my belief that young North American players can compete at the highest levels. However, it is critical that they participate in the European development models as much as possible. There was a great article by US player Geoff Cameron recently that confirmed this.

There is no guarantees that players will receive professional opportunities by participating in any program but I believe this defined pathway does significantly increase the opportunities for ambitious and hard-working players both in Europe and for US Scholarship opportunities.

Each player participating will be tested against professional club academy standards and provided with a detailed plan on what skills to work on and what opportunities they should be taking advantage of on an annual basis. All players will work directly with me and performance will be monitored on an ongoing basis.

Some of the opportunities available are:

1) We will be taking a combined U14/U13 team to Barcelona and Malaga in fall 2018 to train and play at the RCD Espanyol and Malaga Academies

2) As a second stage of this plan Global Image Sports have secured an invite to put a squad in one of the best youth tournaments in the world – the Mediterranean International Cup. This tournament attracts the top teams in the world like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Arsenal, Bayern Munich, Manchester City etc. I will be coaching the U14 Global Image Sports team in the tournament in 2019 and will be scouting U14 players for this team from across North America

 

3) We can now place players in professional clubs in the UK and players can attend 5 day trial programs. Over 20 scouts from professional clubs in England will be assessing the players. Players participating in this program must have access to EEC passports.


* Non-EEC players will have to wait until age 18 to attend trails in UK, Germany or Spain. However, this pathway will prepare them to be capable of reaching the required performance levels in Europe.

If you are a talented player, ambitious and committed to participating in a program that will allow you to match the training volume of academy players in Europe then  contact us immediately.

 

Individual Player Development – 5 Tips on how to accelerate your learning  and increase your performance

 

I have borrowed the 5 bullet Friday idea from one of my favourite performance leaders, Tim Ferris.

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technique + Game Intelligence = Success

As I mentioned in the first article yesterday technical development should be placed at the cornerstone of youth development. Technical ability is a base requirement and will ultimately determine how far young players will go in the game. If young players can successfully master the ball, then they will have the confidence to consistently make the right choices and create solutions for themselves, and others on the field.

Learn More

 

Understand your starting position and roles on the field

The development of young players is much more successful when they understand what is required of them. I advocate that up to U15 young players tactical training should be restricted to developing awareness on the field. In effect, what space can be exploited and decision-making should be developed around what technical skills and movement should be used to exploit this space.  Game formats should progress from 4v4, all the way up to the 11v11 game.

Learn More 

Develop your balance – it is an important skill often overlooked

Balance is an important skill to develop for young players. Players are required to complete soccer tasks balanced on one leg. Passing, receiving, shooting, crossing and dribbling are all completed while balancing on one leg. Many players and coaches overlook balance and take it for granted. However, it is like any other skill – it has to constantly worked on and improved in order to improve performance. The best players in the world all have great balance and this allows them to complete soccer specific skills and movements at high speed, without losing their footing.

Learn More 

 

A young players practical guide to goal setting

Ask any young player what their soccer goals are and they will inevitably talk about playing for one of the top club in the world – Barcelona, Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, Manchester United. As I’ve spoken in my earlier blogs good technical ability is the foundation of a player’s level of ability and will ultimately determine what level they play at. However, as players progress in the game they come up against other players that area as good as them technically, tactically and physically. It is then that young players have to be prepared mentally in order to successfully compete and excel against opponents.

 

Learn More 

How to Prepare for Pathways to Europe?

As soccer nations, the US and Canada are still very young.
With that comes a lack of structure at the professional levels of the game, when compared to the more “mature” soccer nations of Europe. There are fewer professional playing opportunities for the young North American players and a lack of clear pathways to play professionally.

Learn More 

Apply at 1v1 Soccer FC now 

Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week. Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

Individual Player Development – 5 Tips on how to accelerate your learning  and increase your performance

I have borrowed the 5 bullet Friday idea from one of my favourite performance leaders, Tim Ferris.

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technical Training:  Practice by yourself – take ownership of your learning process

We have advocated in previous articles about technical development being the foundation of a young players learning. Arsene Wenger, the Arsenal Manager who has helped develop exciting young players such as Cesc Fabregas, outlined this in an interview many years ago that the development of a young player is like building a house and that the foundation must be built – based on technical development.

Learn More

Tactical Training – Learn different positions

One of the challenges we face in North America is our tendency to place young players in specific positions at young ages. Typically, coaches will place children in positions based on physical size, level of aggression, speed and technical ability.

Learn More

Physical Preparation – include yoga in your weekly training plan

Yoga can help soccer players to improve flexibility, strength and endurance. You can also improve agility and concentration by practicing yoga. Ryan Giggs played at the highest level for Manchester United until he was 39. He attributes his longevity to practicing yoga and has released a DVD of his program which is available online

Watch Video

Mental Preparation – Be Smarter than other players

Men’s Health magazine reported in 2012 that research by Predrag Petrovic (PhD and lead researcher at Karolinska Institute in Stockholm) concluded that soccer players score within the top 2 to 5 per cent of the population when tested on memory, multitasking and creativity.

Learn More

 

Are you looking to train, play and attend professional trials in Europe?

Many young players in North America aspire to play soccer professionally and pursue US Scholarship Opportunities.

However, too many train sporadically and are not training 10+ hours/week to match the training volume of academy players in Europe. In addition, many do not have the opportunity to work with UEFA qualified coaches. In Spain, there is 1 UEFA licensed coach (A or B) for very 27 players ! In North America, there is only one A or B licensed coach for every 865 players!

Since 2000, 1v1 Soccer FC has successfully trained and arranged training and trial opportunities in Europe. Our most successful graduate, Matt Roberts, is currently at Swansea City academy and trained with the first team last week in the teams preparation for the Arsenal game.

I was a young trialist myself back in 1985 with Swindon Town in England and that experience plus the professional club connections that I have developed in my coaching journey allows us to provide our young players with unique training and trial opportunities.

How can you impress scouts at a trial? Learn from former professional player and manager Gus Poyet –

Watch video

Apply at 1v1 Soccer FC now 

Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week. Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

INDIVIDUAL PLAYER DEVELOPMENT – 5 TIPS ON HOW TO ACCELERATE YOU PERFORMANCE

 

I have borrowed the 5 bullet Friday idea from one of my favourite performance leaders, Tim Ferris.

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

 

Technical Training – Lessons from Dennis Bergkamp

So what were some of the attributes that made Bergkamp such a great player and the key attributes in young players that he has identified as a coach?

Learn More

Tactical Training – Understand the trends in the modern game

Game understanding is an area that young North American players can improve upon. Not being part of a culture where soccer is not the dominant sport can be challenging. However, young players can improve their understanding of the game by taking full advantage of resources currently available online. For example what tactical changes have Manchester City use to dominate the years EPL?

Learn More

Physical Preparation – Cristiano Ronaldo Training, Workout Routine, and Diet Plan

Besides long and intense team practices and footwork training, Cristiano Ronaldo focuses on improving his strength, stamina, speed, and functional movements to remain at the very top and produce consistent performances playing at the highest levels

Learn More

Mental Preparation – Meditate like Messi

Researchers from Ulleval University Hospital in Norway report that sportsmen who use meditation after tough training sessions reduce their production of lactate – the ache-inducing by-product of anaerobic exercise – and recover their fitness levels faster.

Learn More 

Accelerate your learning – participate in the Spanish Youth Development System.

Spain is regarded as one of the best youth development systems in the world. Here, we look at how young players at Valencia CF are developed Learn More

We are now accepting applications for young players who want to take their game to a higher level by training and playing at a club in Valencia, Spain.

Apply at 1v1 Soccer FC now 

Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week. Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

INDIVIDUAL PLAYER DEVELOPMENT – 5 TIPS ON HOW TO ACCELERATE YOUR PERFORMANCE DEVELOPMENT

I have borrowed the 5 bullet Friday idea from one of my favourite performance leaders, Tim Ferris.

You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technical Training – Make Technical Training a Daily Habit

Give yourself an advantage over others by putting your time in on the training field. Daniel Coyle from the Talent Code has written about forgetting about 10,000 hours and just focusing on the quality of your practice time – even if it is for 10 minutes/ day. Learn More

By doing this, young players will benefit from their time spent with a ball and will gain tremendous advantages over other young players who do not put this time in.

Learn More

Tactical Training – Let Futsal be your coach

Futsal can play an important role in the individual development of young players in North America.

Our weather dictates that many months are spent indoors and futsal can greatly accelerate the technical and tactical development of young players.

Learn More

Physical Preparation – Train Like the Pros: Improve your speed

Being able to out-pace your opponents gives you a huge advantage in football. Strengthening your glutes and hamstrings will give you the power you need to accelerate explosively, but you also need to ensure that your running technique is right.

Learn More

Mental Preparation – Reduce your stress

One of the largest obstacles to peak performance in young players is stress. Young players are frequently under stress at school in order to achieve high marks for acceptance to post secondary education. In addition, they are often under stress in terms of time management to fulfill both their academic and athletic commitments.

Learn More

Accelerate your learning – participate in the German Youth Development System.

We are now accepting applications for young players who want to take their game to a higher level by training and playing in Germany. Learn more abut their development system in the documentary below. Apply at https://1v1soccerfc.ca/international/

Watch Video

Embrace Hard Work in all your training sessions & games this week. Hard Work beats talent ……when talent doesn’t work hard!

Young Canadian Players can Play Professional Football (soccer) in Europe – Here is how!

In 2000, I formed 1v1 Soccer with the objective to provide young Canadian players with training experiences comparable to leading soccer nations.

Seventeen years later and we currently have 5 players training in Europe!

Matthew Roberts is at the Swansea City Academy, Luke McConnell is playing at a semi-professional level in Portugal, Drazan Rakovac and Noah Pacheco are attending the international academy program at Chievo Verona in Italy and Luca  Jankovic is at the Hercules Soccer Academy in Spain.

JOIN OUR MASTERS PROGRAM – ATTEND TRIALS IN EUROPE IN 2018 

We are currently training over 70+ players and are looking to train and place several players in academy programs in Europe in 2018.

We will also be offering formal trial opportunities in Germany, Portugal, UK and Spain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHY NORTH AMERICAN PLAYERS SHOULD TRAIN & PLAY IN EUROPE

Train with 1v1 Soccer FC and take your next step towards professional playing opportunities in Europe. Semi-professional players can earn 800-1,000 euros/month, receive free room and board and play in front of 8,000 fans each week.

APPLY TO TRAIN AND PLAY IN EUROPE IN 2018

Longer stays and more frequent trips will allow the North America player to better understand the performance standards in Europe and improve their performance levels in all four areas – technically, tactically, physically and mentally!

 

 

INDIVIDUAL PLAYER DEVELOPMENT – 5 FREE TIPS ON HOW TO ELEVATE YOUR PERFORMANCE LEVELS

I have borrowed the 5 bullet Friday idea from one of my favourite performance leaders, Tim Ferris. You can subscribe to  these weekly individual player performance tips here

Technical Training – Supplement Team Training with Individual Training

Several studies have confirmed that the number of hours of “deliberate practice” play a greater role in the development of young players that go on to play at higher levels, rather than innate talent.

A positive linear relationship was found between accumulated individual plus team practice time and the level of skill when a group of international, national and provincial players were assessed. ( Helsen, W., Hodges N.J., Winckel, J. & Starkes, J., (2000) Journal of Sports Science)

Learn More

Tactical Training – Be Prepared to press, persist and possess

The modern game is one of flexibility. The game is more fluid than ever and the top teams now deploy “inverted full-backs and wingers”, false number 9s and ball-playing goalkeepers to deal more effectively with retaining possession and winning it back quickly. The game today resembles more and more the sport of basketball where the winning team typically is the one that has managed transitions between attack/defence better.

Learn More

Physical Preparation – The Importance of Sleep for Optimal Performance

One of the main challenges of young players in North America is ensuring that they are getting enough sleep for optimal performance. Academic demands at school can be high, the North American lifestyle of families is typically fast-paced and many young players are training late at night, too often and are not getting sufficient sleep. The ability to scan the field of play, process information quickly and make good decisions are essential attributes for top players. A lack of sleep can severely limit this ability and impair the pace of development.

Learn More

Intensive Small-Group Training Classes Now Available at NEW Ancaster Facility – Learn More 

 

 

 

Mental Preparation – Dare to Dream

During last summer, I was fortunate to travel to France to watch Northern Ireland play in the 2016 Euros. We over-achieved as a small country of only 1.8 million people. The team successfully navigated through a tough qualifying group containing Germany, Poland and the Ukraine to reach the last 16? Why does a small nation like Northern Ireland hold the record as the smallest nation to win a game at the World Cup finals? How can we be ranked as high as 26 in the FIFA world rankings? The players dared to dream!

Learn More

A Motivational Video from Anthony Robbins

High Performance coach Tony Robbins has identified hunger as the main trait that separates the best in sports from the rest. Do you have a relentless desire to reach higher levels and when you reach those are you willing to push on to reach even higher levels?

Watch Video