This article was written by Sean Connors, Rush Soccer’s Global Goalkeeping Director.
As part of the Rush our goal is to be the best soccer club in the world. Have the best soccer players in the world, and of course the best goalkeepers in the world! We need to know where we want to go in order to plot the best course to get there. The same goes for individual clubs and coaches when thinking about how to best train and teach the goalkeeper.
The overall goal is to produce goalkeepers that keep the ball out of the net, keep possession for the team, organize and lead the team, and play with a presence that exudes confidence in self and team. To achieve this goal it starts with putting goalkeepers in the best training environment possible every week!
At Rush we recommend group GKs based on their skill level rather than age. This is different from your typical team training environment. The uniqueness of the position allows grouping based on skill and logistically it is easy to achieve at specialized GK training.
Below is an example based on using five training groups. Listed with the levels are age groups, however this is only for reference. The best players should be pushed into the next group. If your staffing allows the division of more groups that is even better.
Level 1: Usually 7v7, U9-U10
Level 2: Usually 9v9, U11-U12
Level 3: Usually 11v11, U13-U14
Level 4: Usually 11v11, U15-U17
Level 5: Usually 11v11, U18-U19
Be very careful when advancing a 9v9 GK into a 11v11 group. The ball size and the goal size are different and require the GK to handle changes from training to game.
GOALKEEPING DEVELOPMENTAL CURRICULUM – TECHNICAL CHECKLIST BY TRAINING LEVELS
Lastly, taking into consideration the distribution abilities of the GK before advancing them into higher groups. They must be able to distribute at the level of the higher group in order to achieve proper training reps for the other GKs around them. It’s not fair to the more advanced GKs to train with a lower level GK that can’t produce the service needed for their own development.
Once proper training groups are established, and technical/tactical focuses are established, it still comes down to the coach and the player working together to develop.
Coaching Goalkeepers is more than just teaching the technical and tactical aspects of the position. Working to improve a Goalkeepers mentality is vital to their success. Goalkeeper Coaches must work to create an environment that is safe for the GK to train and make mistakes. All Goalkeepers will let in goals… especially during training when they face shot after shot. GK Coaches must work with their GKs to be comfortable in those moments by focusing on learning from the goal, and then moving on and focusing on the next save.
This drill is designed to help you improve your ball control. This is a great drill to help you develop the ball control that will enable you to cut and change direction quickly. Goal: When you reach the point of being able to do whatever you want with the ball; you will have more fun playing the game.
Speed on your feet is something really important for a soccer player on and off the ball. In this work out we will challenge your speed. 7 exercises to perform as fast as you can. Are you the fastest FITTER player? Let us know! Have fun!
Rush Soccer has 11 core values. These core values are more than great words, are behaviors that we commit to and that we expect others to show as well. These are Respect, Unity, Safety, Humility, Tenacity, Empathy, Advice, Leadership, Enjoyment, Accountability, and my favorite Passion! Learn about Passion with this video and find them all in the word puzzle below!
And here we are! Last week of our program. Now is time to check how much you improved after working hard and consistently through these weeks. Go through the work out early in the week and finish strong by doing the fitness test. Let us know your results! We are looking forward to knowing how you did!
Are you ready? We are going to need your full attention! Concentrate, pay attention to the details and find the seven differences! Send us a screenshot and show us where they were! But hey! Shhhh… Don’t let the others know!