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Murrysville Area Soccer Association

Murrysville Area Soccer Association

Coaching Overview

The principal objective of coaches in all levels of MASA is to foster the development of all players while promoting an enjoyable overall experience and a lifelong love of soccer. 

MASA supports teams from U6 through U19. The goal of player development – i.e., the goal of coaches – is to help players to maximize their technical skill and tactical awareness at every stage of development across this range. 

U6 and U8 levels are the early developmental levels, and the coaching focuses on basic and intermediate skills and tactical knowledge. Primary skills at these levels are trapping, passing, shooting, dribbling, and defending. Tactically, all U6 and U8 teams play a 1-2-1 (“diamond”) formation, featuring one defender, two midfielders, and a forward. This shape provides the template for all advanced formations used at U10 (six field players and a goalie), U11 and U12 (eight field players and a goalie), and U13 and older (ten field players and a goalie). Practice sessions for U8 teams are divided into three main phases: skill development, tactical development, and play. Every player has numerous touches on the ball and moves consistently throughout the practice time. The primary individual skills (trapping, passing, dribbling, etc.) are the focal points of the skill phase of practice; basic tactical skills (maintaining a diamond shape, team defending, corner and goal kicks, etc.) are the focal points of the tactical phase of practice; putting everything together is the focal point of the play (typically, scrimmage) phase of practice. As the season extends and players become more proficient, the difficulty of the skills and tactics being learned and practiced increases.

U10 features an increased number of field players (6), a larger field and goal, and the introduction of the goalkeeper. The individual and tactical skills developed in U6 and U8 are the building blocks for the more advanced skills developed across U10. U10 also features the introduction of tryout-populated travel teams for players of more advanced skill. The 1-2-1 formation of the developmental levels becomes the 2-3-1, 3-2-1, or 3-1-2 formation of the U10 level, and players continue to work on team movement and strategy both offensively and defensively. Practices continue to feature skill, tactic, and play phases with the same general philosophy that began in the developmental levels. As the season extends and players become more proficient, the difficulty of the skills and tactics being learned and practiced increases.

In the same way that U10 builds on the foundation of U6 and U8, U11 and U12 build on the foundation of U10. U11 and U12 feature an increased number of field players (8) and a larger field and goal. The individual and tactical skills developed in U10 are the building blocks for the more advanced skills developed across U11 and U12. MASA supports tryout-populated travel teams for these age divisions for players of more advanced skill. The formations of the U10 level become the 3-3-2, 4-3-1, or 3-4-1 formations of the U11 and U12 levels, and players begin to experience more advanced and complex approaches to team movement and strategy both offensively and defensively. Practices continue to feature skill, tactic, and play phases with the same general philosophy that began in the developmental levels. As the season extends and players become more proficient, the difficulty of the skills and tactics being learned and practiced increases.

The highest age divisions at MASA, U13-U19, feature a full-sized number of field players (10) and a full-sized field and goal and are the products of the MASA system begun in the youngest developmental levels. Advanced skills and tactical strategies are featured at every level of these age divisions, and MASA supports tryout-populated travel teams for players of more advanced skill. The tactical formations that began in U6 and U8 and increased in complexity across U10, U11, and U12 reach their most advanced states in the 4-4-2, 4-3-3, or 3-5-2 formations of U13-U19. Practices continue to feature skill, tactic, and play phases with the same general philosophy that began in the developmental levels. As the season extends and players become more proficient, the difficulty of the skills and tactics being learned and practiced increases.

To be a coach in MASA, you must complete certifications & background checks. See below:

Background Check
SafeSport Certification
Coaching License (Travel Coaches)


Contact

Murrysville Area Soccer Association
PO Box 494 
Murrysville, Pennsylvania 15668

Email: [email protected]

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