Beginning goalkeepers

An article I put together with input from local coaches Ian and Jeff, and Erin Ridley of the Quakes on the beginning goalkeeper (part of 3 part series that will cover the junior and high school youth goalkeeper as well).

 

MWN

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@Grace T.

Good job, liked the inclusion of 3 youth keeper coaches and their perspective. I liked the fact that Erin seemed to mirror many of the points I jump up and down on, namely dedicating a keeper to the position before age 12/13. Overall, a valuable article.
 
@Grace T.

Good job, liked the inclusion of 3 youth keeper coaches and their perspective. I liked the fact that Erin seemed to mirror many of the points I jump up and down on, namely dedicating a keeper to the position before age 12/13. Overall, a valuable article.

Thanks!

I like that they also touch upon the quandary, though, like Jeff does in the what coaches expect section. The issue is goalkeeper training takes a lot of time (even for the basic safety stuff Jeff touches upon like diving correctly). No coach is going to be devoting practice sessions for all of their players to practice diving (there just isn't enough time and too many other problems to deal with). But the coaches tend to blame the goalkeepers for goals, even if it's a limitation and not a mistake (Ian does a great job of touching on that aspect).

So it leaves 5 imperfect solutions: 1) like Jeff suggests, no goalkeepers til about age 10 or 11, 2) like Jeff suggests happens, put the kid who can't otherwise play on the field in goal, effectively having no goalkeeper and effectively driving the unlucky kid eventually out of soccer but the kid gets to play with a team he otherwise wouldn't for a year or 2, 3) everyone plays the position (but then coaches shouldn't expect more than stopping shots directed straight at the keeper and should prohibit the 1 v 1 rushes and diving because of the safety issue Jeff raises), 4) 2 or 3 keepers and rotate them (but then the keepers need training in the goalkeeper position, which means coaches need to avoid comparing them or putting one up higher than the other even if they are better than the other one or 2), or 5) dedicated keepers (with the resulting problems which Erin and you have suggested).

Having lived through situations 3, 4, and 5 and seen 2 countless times, I'm inclined to think 4 is the only good solution, but it again isn't perfect, is very unstable (unless the 2 or 3 keepers are roughly very equivalent in skill) and requires a coach that is a good manager and willing to lose games (which as we've discussed in other threads, most aren't)
 
We occasionally visit Jeff on Monday's for training in Eastvale. Enjoy his views. He shared this article elsewhere. Thanks for putting it together and look forward to the next couple parts.
 
We occasionally visit Jeff on Monday's for training in Eastvale. Enjoy his views. He shared this article elsewhere. Thanks for putting it together and look forward to the next couple parts.
Jeff's a great guy. DS occassionally goes out for him on Sunday's but it's such a long way off. He's a great teacher, especially when it comes to tactics.
 
Interesting too the Quakes just signed the second youngest MLS signing Ochoa, at age 14, and he's a goalkeeper. So if the recommendations were followed, he was only playing full time maybe a year or two at most. Granted, he is a unicorn.

 
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