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If you had the opportunity to ask your favorite soccer player for advice, what would you ask? Professional players and coaches are a wealth of knowledge when it comes to succeeding in the game. Here are some of our favorite gems of advice from the pros:
Lionel Messi – Don’t Run with the Ball
Lionel Messi is arguably the biggest superstar in soccer right now. He’s a genius at exploiting his opponents and making difficult, technical moves look simple and organic. One of his biggest pieces of advice is never to run with the ball. You must always sprint and dribble at top speed. The faster you get at dribbling, the more ground you can cover at top speed while keeping the ball away from the other team.
Raphael Van Der Vaart – Play Forward
Whether you are midfield or defense, you can still play forward. This means you always have your head up and are looking for opportunities to score or help your teammates score. It’s about being positive and moving the ball forward, even if it means having to go back at first. Always think ahead and try to imagine moves in advance so you can position yourself to be in the ideal place to help the team.
Cristiano Ronaldo – Keep it Simple
Ronaldo’s advice falls in line with the theory that less is more. Whether you are practicing or in a game, always think about what you want to accomplish and the best way possible to accomplish it. Break your movements into simple steps and only focus on that.
Gerard Pique – Defense Shadow
One of the biggest mistakes that defenders make is giving their opponents too much space. Giving them space provides opportunities to receive passes and even score. As a defensive player, you want to become your opponent’s shadow. Don’t give the attacker space, and make sure you are always keeping one eye on your attacker and one on the ball to ensure they don’t get possession.
Lionel Messi – Pick a Corner
We have a second gem from Messi since his methods are so simple and effective. Another piece of advice he gives is to stay composed when scoring. It’s easy to simply kick the ball as hard as possible and hope that it gets past the goaltender, but a real player will stay composed and pick a corner to shoot for in a strategic move to ensure the ball goes in.
By following the advice from some of these seasoned professionals, you can become a better, more confident player.