Fundamentals of Football – How hard can it be?

Looking at stats behind the scenes, this post seems to be read on a daily basis, 3 today, 10 yesterday and 17 on Tuesday etc etc. Written in June 2012, I was wondering what is its specific appeal.

Does it come out on top from search engine enquiries?  What, if anything, would you wish to add? A simple game complicated by fools?

I have decided to write this piece in a bid to react to what really makes a good football player (Reactionary to “is this the time to sell Walcott?”) particularly when it comes to delivering in the required playing position. I believe the knowledge of the facts of an issue will result in better formulation of opinions.

The fundamentals of football relates to the following:

1. The Player

2. The Team

3. The Formation

4. The Positions

So we will consider the fundamentals of football within the spectrum of these four key aspects

1. The Player

There are basic requirements needed for an individual to qualify as a football player.

a. Ball Control:

Ball control is primarily the ability to position a ball such that it favours the overall objective of getting a goal. In other words, to get a goal, a player must be able to receive a pass, make a pass and shoot at goal. Basic skills needed here are Foot Control of Ball, Chesting, Heading (Nodding), Kicking (Shooting), and Movement (Running, Jumping, and Sweeping)

b. Ball Possession:

In the event where the opposition has the ball, a player is required to possess the basic ability:  technical or physical or both to dispossess the opponent of the ball for the purpose of gaining or regaining possession. For example Marking and Tackling

c. Team Play:

When it is a game, it only means there is more than one. There is no such game with only one person involved. At least there must be the player and the coach, and in this discourse, there are more than one and thus the necessity for Team play.

d. Knowledge of the rules.

2. The Team

The Team that will play football and win will have the following basic requirements

a. Desire to win: Since football is a game, it is just thus a fact that if there is no desire to win, there is no need to play. Of course somebody will say you can play for pleasure, but I dare ask ‘is there any pleasure in Losing?’ Desire to win or lose will be betrayed by Urgency, Grit, Determination, Belief etc.

b. Tactics: There must be the development of a tactic to overcome the opposition.

c. Tactical discipline: The ability to see out a game according to tactics must be present in a team

d. Knowledge of the rules.

3. The formation

The fundamental requirements of any formation are

a. Departments: Ranging from Defence, to Midfield, to Attack; a formation must possess those three. Each of these three may be sub-divided to accommodate details (Positions).

b. Balance: To assist in the overall objective of overcoming the opposition, the team must be able to achieve result without any department faltering.

4. The Positions

Each Position in The Department, in The Formation and in The Team defines qualities that are fundamental to The Player. Therefore, taking the fundamentals required from a player and defined in the position the player must play are here listed

a. Defence: Stamina, Tackling, Vision, Swiftness, Link-up play, Game Reader

b. Mid-field: Stamina, Tackling, Vision, Swiftness, Link-up play, Hold-up play, Distribution, Dribbling, Game Reader.

c. Attack: Stamina, Tackling, Vision, Swiftness, Dribbling, Finishing,

Considering these fundamentals, to succeed at the top top level like Arsene will normally say, A player must possess all the aforementioned qualities in degrees that qualifies him as a professional and additional qualities that distinguishes him for the position, for the formation, for the team and also not forgetting for the opposition. In reacting to if Theo Walcott is a necessity or a player Arsenal should do away with, I think we need to consider what Theo has that is peculiar to him. Speed, Penetrating run, Accurate pin-pointed cross-in (Grounder or Lofted), and lately superb finishing, I think he is a player suitable for teams playing Highline or generally lack tactical and positional awareness. Also, considering he is 23 years old, I think it is only logical to allow him develop other innate skills that a player can only get as he ages and hope he turns out the kind of player that can show up for any kind of opposition.

I believe with these submissions, we can fairly assess a player and determine if he is suitable for Arsenal or not.

Thank you.

Written by Timmy


30 Responses to Fundamentals of Football – How hard can it be?

  1. chas says:

  2. Big Raddy says:

    Morning All,

    Baby doesn’t look too happy.

    Odd that so many people read. Hard to recall the time when Theo looked a proper winger, was it before his shoulder injuries?

  3. Eddie says:

    Baby looks fat 🙂

    Very complicated post to explain the simple game of football.
    For me it is all about scoring more goals. It makes the game exciting and it wins you points. Now that is simple.

  4. chas says:

    Sorry about the post, chaps.
    I suppose why it gets so many hits will remain a mystery.
    When there us no post up at all for a day, the site gets more traffic. 😨

    Completely agree about the scoring more goals thing. Partly why I was so baffled by the second half at stamfud bridge.

  5. chas says:

    I was reading somewhere that being fat in some cultures is regarded as a sign of prosperity and good health.

  6. Gööner In Exile says:

    Brian Clough’s quotes always stick:

    “If God had wanted us to play football in the clouds, he’d have put grass up there.”

    “Players lose you games, not tactics. There’s so much crap talked about tactics by people who barely know how to win at dominoes.”

    I also thought he made a comment about football being a simple game made complicated by fools but maybe that’s the Shankly quote.

    Not seen this one before:

    “ I drool when I watch Arsenal and it has nowt to do with my age. It’s because I recognise a team and a manager who, a bit like me all those years ago, have turned simplicity into an art form.”

  7. Gööner In Exile says:

    Where do I need to move toChas?

  8. LBG says:

    It doesn’t mean you ARE prosperous and in good health, just that you were first at the charity lorries that arrived.

  9. chas says:


    You were skinny last time I saw you.

    Well, skinny for a fat bastard goalkeeper anyway!

  10. Red Arnie says:

    thanks, Chas. 🙂

    ahem. Micky’s AAA strategy rings a bell. 🙂

  11. fred1266 says:

    In Canada apparently

  12. chas says:

  13. VP of Oz says:

    Unai Emery on Arsenal –
    “Arsenal play ­possession football and throughout my career, I’ve ­always been a coach who wants ­possession.

    “There is ­something I would like to add to my ­philosophy, that I like to win the ball back as quickly ­as possible.

    “So it’s about two things: possession and ­pressing. What I want is for Arsenal to ­transmit energy and emotion to the fans.”

  14. LB says:

    Bring it on UE

  15. chas says:

  16. chas says:

  17. Eddie says:

    Hugo Lloris: Tottenham goalkeeper charged with drink-driving

  18. Big Raddy says:

    4.31. Love that pic.

  19. fred1266 says:

  20. Red Arnie says:

    wow, Ant 🙂

  21. Gööner In Exile says:

    Chas, few pounds back on since then. Though with Mrs Exile picking up get bike today and G taking to riding long distances if I can get H going we will be a fit biking family in no time! I’m cureently researching bike racks and panniers, object to putting them on my hardtail but needs must!

  22. chas says:

  23. chas says:

    Fat Sam football – get it in the air then make sure you’re first to get your head on it.

  24. chas says:

    Why would anyone who wasn’t a spud think that was funny?

  25. Eddie says:

    i am not a spud and i think it is funny 🙂 🙂

  26. Eddie says:

    …you miserable old git! what time are you going on manoeuvres today?

  27. chas says:


  28. chas says:

    We’re on the 10:45 train from Notts

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