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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. 08:01 - Sep 13 with 1145 viewsCharlie_pl_baxter

Bellingham was great last night, as others have said, now a world class player with time to develop further. At the same time we're nearly ten years on from the FAs decision to run smaller sided games at the youth level.

Bellingham would be one of the first to play under the new set up, with an extra few years playing 9 aside rather than going straight to 11 aside at U11s.

Coincidence, or might we expect more skilled players coming through?

Poll: We recruit two strikers, one has to be Bonne or Wickham, who would you have?

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 08:33 - Sep 13 with 1070 viewsPioneerBlue

A little simplified but looking at other coaching models hockey, netball, football they are all promoting more touches of the ball; less drill based training and more game scenario related ways to pick up basics like passing and controlling and decision making that leads to more ball retention.

I expect coaching also has a big impact coupled with a born ability which for Belli it was probably evident quite early !!

Blog: Ipswich Ramblings

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 09:50 - Sep 13 with 961 viewsCharlie_pl_baxter

Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 08:33 - Sep 13 by PioneerBlue

A little simplified but looking at other coaching models hockey, netball, football they are all promoting more touches of the ball; less drill based training and more game scenario related ways to pick up basics like passing and controlling and decision making that leads to more ball retention.

I expect coaching also has a big impact coupled with a born ability which for Belli it was probably evident quite early !!


That sounds about right. Think they brought in a different approach more generally of which small sided games was one part.

Poll: We recruit two strikers, one has to be Bonne or Wickham, who would you have?

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 10:29 - Sep 13 with 913 viewsRobTheMonk

In my mid 30's, I'm now playing a 7 a side'ish game every week. Friendly, casual but competitive. It's the most I've enjoyed football. You get lots of the ball and it encourages creativity on the pitch.
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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 10:40 - Sep 13 with 882 viewsitfcjoe

There is a massive gap between the 'Golden Generation' who for all their faults for England were World Class players who were born between 1977-1980ish and then the next set of World Class players who were born in the mid-late 90s and onwards.

Wayne Rooney aside, there really wasn't one top England player born between the early 1980s and mid 1990s, so the academy revolution instigated by Howard Wilkinson which would have seen boys born from about 1992 onwards be able to go for more coaching at clubs from a younger age is when the standard of player started to rise

I know EPPP gets a bad rep because people look at it from a club basis, but that has added rocket fuel to the development and came in in 2011 so the likes of Saka, Foden, Bellingham and the like have had the increased standards from when they joined the academy at 7-8 years old and those born in 2002-3 onwards have had top development from day 1, whilst those from 97-2002 have had lesser years of it.

It's all about quality contact time, with quality coaches - there are lots of arguments that there are too many casualties along the way with academy football - but purely for increasing the talent level of our native population EPPP has been a huge success, as Wilkinson's reforms were before that

Poll: Club vs country? What would you choose
Blog: What is Going on With the Academy at Ipswich Town?

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 10:48 - Sep 13 with 861 viewsthe_toff

Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 10:40 - Sep 13 by itfcjoe

There is a massive gap between the 'Golden Generation' who for all their faults for England were World Class players who were born between 1977-1980ish and then the next set of World Class players who were born in the mid-late 90s and onwards.

Wayne Rooney aside, there really wasn't one top England player born between the early 1980s and mid 1990s, so the academy revolution instigated by Howard Wilkinson which would have seen boys born from about 1992 onwards be able to go for more coaching at clubs from a younger age is when the standard of player started to rise

I know EPPP gets a bad rep because people look at it from a club basis, but that has added rocket fuel to the development and came in in 2011 so the likes of Saka, Foden, Bellingham and the like have had the increased standards from when they joined the academy at 7-8 years old and those born in 2002-3 onwards have had top development from day 1, whilst those from 97-2002 have had lesser years of it.

It's all about quality contact time, with quality coaches - there are lots of arguments that there are too many casualties along the way with academy football - but purely for increasing the talent level of our native population EPPP has been a huge success, as Wilkinson's reforms were before that


'there really wasn't one top England player born between the early 1980s and mid 1990s'.

Ashley Cole, Harry Kane and Kyle Walker might have something to say about that.
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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:09 - Sep 13 with 827 viewsitfcjoe

Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 10:48 - Sep 13 by the_toff

'there really wasn't one top England player born between the early 1980s and mid 1990s'.

Ashley Cole, Harry Kane and Kyle Walker might have something to say about that.


Ashley Cole was 1980 so part of that Golden Generation.

Kane and Walker have developed into World Class players and still going strong, so both of them are fair, I wouldn't have put them on the same level as Rooney just because of that impact coming through and fact he would have got into every England team ever but agree they are players who have been superb and continue to do so.

It's still pretty thin gruel when you compare what came before and what came after though - even through the last few tournaments its only really been Henderson, Kane, Walker who have been good experienced options in there and been able to hold onto a place through merit

Poll: Club vs country? What would you choose
Blog: What is Going on With the Academy at Ipswich Town?

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:12 - Sep 13 with 804 viewsCityBlue

SSGs are an intrinsic piece of the weekly training plan because contrary to belief football is not and never will be a 11 v 11 game other than names of a team sheet.
The field breaks down into zones and consists of ninety minutes of small battles, be it 1 on 1s or 3 v 3s etc and hence the use of SSGs in training helps to replicate in game situations.

I T I D

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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:28 - Sep 13 with 773 viewsthe_toff

Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:09 - Sep 13 by itfcjoe

Ashley Cole was 1980 so part of that Golden Generation.

Kane and Walker have developed into World Class players and still going strong, so both of them are fair, I wouldn't have put them on the same level as Rooney just because of that impact coming through and fact he would have got into every England team ever but agree they are players who have been superb and continue to do so.

It's still pretty thin gruel when you compare what came before and what came after though - even through the last few tournaments its only really been Henderson, Kane, Walker who have been good experienced options in there and been able to hold onto a place through merit


Yes we've not been blessed with players in that era that you can hand on heart say were world class. Rooney, Kane and Walker are though.

World Cup 2014 was the outcome of that generation I suppose, which was quite bleak. The midpoint of your range (lets say 1987 / 1988) would've been 26 / 27 then.

Finishing bottom of a group of Costa Rica, Uruguay and Italy thanks to having a team of good, but not exceptional premier league players like Jagielka, Welbeck, Baines etc.
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Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:37 - Sep 13 with 751 viewsitfcjoe

Small sided youth games = better players. Discuss. on 11:28 - Sep 13 by the_toff

Yes we've not been blessed with players in that era that you can hand on heart say were world class. Rooney, Kane and Walker are though.

World Cup 2014 was the outcome of that generation I suppose, which was quite bleak. The midpoint of your range (lets say 1987 / 1988) would've been 26 / 27 then.

Finishing bottom of a group of Costa Rica, Uruguay and Italy thanks to having a team of good, but not exceptional premier league players like Jagielka, Welbeck, Baines etc.


I think it also showed by how quickly the more senior players dropped out of the squad and were replaced by kids.

Also after 2014, came 2016 and the loss to Iceland

At 2018 WC we only had 5 players over 28 - Walker, Jamie Vardy, Gary Cahill, Fabian Delph and Ashley Young.......that's the cream of that generation (Rooney had retired) that was left playing

Poll: Club vs country? What would you choose
Blog: What is Going on With the Academy at Ipswich Town?

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