Random thoughts from a football mad teacher living in the Middle East

Quick intro for all my fans, which in this case is just my 2year old son who can’t read this, but I’ll persist anyway. I’m a 30-something teacher living in Abu Dhabi. I live, breathe and work in football on my time off, which is quite a lot. My wife got bored with hearing my sometimes strong and occasionally amusing musings on anything from UAE laws to my dislike of Di Canio as a manager so thought I’d see if anyone wanted to listen to me in cyberspace.

Take a look at my posts and feel free to comment, good or bad. I like a good bit of banter.

Also try to see if you can insult me in less than 140 characters on Twitter @sethrey1471

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7 thoughts on “Random thoughts from a football mad teacher living in the Middle East

  1. Looks like this was a particularly long turd you were having Seth!!

    Anyway having come from a similar coaching background to yourself I could not agree more and it will be many years before this changes.

    In addition a big problem we have is not just the attitude of the coaches but also Joe Public. Players as young as five are given praise for booting the ball aimlessly up field and the big tall fast kids with absolutely no footballing ability what so ever are still given a game as their physical attributes are advantageous at a young age.

    However as we all know the physical attributes even themselves out in the end and when the tall well developed kid with no skill reaches 16 and 17 no longer have the physical advantage but do still have limited technical ability. There may have been kids with much better technical ability who have walked away from the from football as they don’t get a game kept out by the big tall fast kid.

    In the current English culture towards the way the game is played at grass roots level if a player like Lionel Messi was born and was 6 / 7 years old he be told to hit the channels, clear it, knock it long and never progress into the world class talent that he is, FACT!

    To this day I see parents and managers watching kids teams that are more worried about the result at all costs rather than teaching kids how to play the right way. Often kids trying to display technical ability will be labelled a ‘fancy Dan’ and rather encouraged to ‘Welly it’ or ‘put it in row Z’

    Then we wonder why we have a national team that is not technically good enough to retain possession and consistently looks to knock a long ball. If you look at the English players at top clubs Gerrard/lampard they are surrounded by foreign players more technically gifted with the ball and it allows them to make the most of their attributes and that’s what helps then be top players. Of course in the England team we dont have that luxury.

    So unfortunately we need to strap ourselves in and watch us try to ‘dig in’ and ‘use the null dog spirit’ in major tournaments where we park the bus chase shadows and have less than 30% possession in order to thwart superior opposition!

    Peace Out

    • Mate,

      I couldn’t agree with you more! It is really bad how size seems to matter so much and no one seems to have any foresight into genealogy and growth! And you’re right about Messi. Imagine how many footballers England have lost because of this attitude. Joe Cole is a typical example and even Gazza to an extent, although his may have been a little self inflicted!

  2. Don’t tell me England’s not playing well! With Mexico struggling (to say the least) to qualify for the World Cup, we need a team to cheer on!! 😦

    • Sorry Jess, it looks like everyone will be cheering on Ghana! I think England will make it to be fair, but they won’t go far, that’s for sure! I’m working with FIFA for the U17 World Cup next month as a rep for the Nigerian team and Mexico are in our group. They are the current winners so maybe you will have some good players coming through in a few years!

      • I know! It’s strange! They also won in 2005, and the U23 got the gold at the Olympics, and still the talent just doesn’t seem to be getting through to the national team!

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