In the community league programs, the players should arrive at the field in uniform 30 or 45 minutes before kickoff, which allows for a reasonable amount of time to prepare. The players should be well-rested and should have eaten a light but sustaining meal three hours prior to the game.


The coach should have a first aid kit and water or other liq£ids for the players to drink. Water and a wet sponge or towel does wonders to revitalize a player who has taken a knock and needs attention. The players should bring with them spare shoes or studs and know which type to wear for the surface they are playing on. The coach's pregame talk should be brief and straightforward. Excessive instruction at this point may confuse the players. A discussion should be held with the captain on which way to kick should he get the choice. Consider the surface, sun and wind. Take the wind if you can.

About 15 minutes before the start, the players should be told to do some stretching and then to warm up with some running and ball work. When the whistle blows to start the game, they should be 100 percent ready. A last-minute word of encouragement and a mention about sportsmanship is in order.

It is important for substitutes to know their exact roles. The coach must know each player's abilities, which enables him to position him or her and to get the best out of the talent available. The players must be given ample time to settle into the game. Five minutes in and out is no good. Players should not accustomed to. An enthusiastic, positive attitude is important but a coach must be composed and in control.

After the game, win or lose, players should acknowledge opponents and officials.

A coach should not get into a deep discussion with his team immediately after the game. That can be saved for the next practice, when he has had time to analyze performances and make notes. Again, the coach should be brief. Each player should be checked for injury and treatment arranged, if needed.

That evening, the coach should prepare for the next practice, including the correcting of individual and team errors.

Practice makes perfect.