Futsal Presents Great Way To Improve Soccer Skills

Young Futsal Players - (Photo: Flickr.com)

With the majority of fall youth soccer seasons drawing to a close, many aspiring soccer players come to a rest amidst the winter holidays.  However, the offseason is the perfect time to really work on your technical skills and no game provides this better than Futsal, a small-sided game similar to indoor soccer.  Futsal is played on a hard court with a reduced squad and also utilizes a smaller, heavier ball than traditional outdoor soccer.

What makes Futsal so special is that there is a very heavy demand and focus on ball skills and control.  These skills are ones that aren’t required in outdoor youth soccer, but are required for players who want to become professionals.  The heavier ball also places an emphasis on keeping the ball on the ground, and utilizing quick passes.

There is no reward for long balls and errant passes in Futsal.  In outdoor soccer, defenders can clear any trouble by simply heaving the ball away, and sometimes it works in your team’s favor as a striker happens upon the loose ball.  But in Futsal, the court is far too small and congested with players for any long balls to reach their intended target.

Even in indoor soccer, the walls surrounding the field help reduce embarrassing moments by keeping the ball in play.  Futsal is like indoor soccer with no walls.  Therefore, players have to learn to control the ball to the utmost degree and must refrain from simply blasting away.

Countless soccer stars have benefitted from Futsal in their development.  Names like Ronaldo, Ronaldinho, Messi, Maradona, Pele, and Kaka have all mentioned Futsal as an integral part of their youth training.  It seems that this has become the latest training method to help develop great players.

Technical ball skills are so crucial for success in soccer.  Countless athletes in other sports have professed a love and interest in playing soccer.  Football stars like Chad Johnson and track stars like Usain Bolt seem to have all the physical attributes to succeed in the game, but without ball skills they are practically useless on a soccer pitch.

Being able to pinpoint a direct pass or navigate through heavy traffic with a ball is just as important as any speed or strength.  Futsal helps people develop these skills.  The game can be exceedingly challenging, especially for youngsters, but if they can master the touch skills required for the indoor game they will succeed in the outdoor brand of the sport.

Players like Santi Cazorla and Xavi are masters of ball control and dominate their opponents by keeping the ball in close quarters and with their abilities to retain possession.  These are skills that are relatively ignored in the large outdoor game, when coaching becomes focused on tactics and organizing long passes.  If these skills are mastered, you can become a great soccer player.

And so instead of wasting away on a couch this winter until spring soccer commences again, try your feet at a new and challenging game like Futsal.  You are likely to see vast improvements in time for the spring season, and you may find that practicing these skills pays big dividends in the outdoor soccer game.

 


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