Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Pia Sundhage: Total Football

Johan Cruyff: 'God's gift to football'

All football fans sigh with pleasure to hear the phrase "total football". It brings to mind the legend Johan Cruyff, and his Dutch team's creative, flowing, dynamic, beautiful football.

That's what Pia Sundhage is preaching to the USWNT. Hurrah!

dailybreeze.com: Weekly soccer column: Sundhage revives the U.S. team

Not surprisingly [] Sundhage preaches a European-style "total football" approach, where Greg Ryan, her predecessor as U.S. coach, emphasized defense first .

"She's making everybody defend and everybody do the offensive side," said midfielder Shannon Boxx, the former South Torrance High star. "Greg was very much on the defensive side and Pia is very much on the offensive side."

Presumably, that will eliminate the reliance on low-percentage long balls out of the back and then hoping goal-scoring machine Abby Wambach can get on the end of them.

Finesse and tactical awareness will replace brute strength and strategic naivete.

And players will be asked to do more, rather than simply fill a niche and perform a specialized role.

hat tip to USA Women's Soccer blog.

1 comment:

lexis said...

Personallly, i think an American coach should coach an American team. whats the point of being the "USWNT" if they're gonna play like a bunch of Europeans? not that the Europeans are bad players, but they have a totally different style-and we must remember that the US spanked all the European teams in the FIFA 2007 World Cup, maybe we should study Brazil's style of playing.