FUTURES Learn the FC Barcelona Way
FC Barcelona are renowned around the world for the stars they develop, and the FUTURES players got the opportunity to understand why when they trained under the guidance of their academy coaches.
“They must learn to be independent, to take decisions, to think and not be instructed by the coach” says FC Barcelona coach Josep Cabre when asked what the secret of the Barcelona’s training philosophy is. He was one of the club’s coaches that led sessions with the FUTURES players who had been selected from United Futsal’s National Training Camps.
“I saw very quickly that the players were excellent technically and physically. What they found challenging was taking the appropriate decision for futsal.” This is why Cabre focused his training sessions on decision-making and tactics with the players showing significant progression over the week.
He understands why the players lack the game understanding aspect which was highlighted when the FUTURES teams played games against Barca’s youth sides. “In the US futsal is seen as a tool to learn to play soccer. Here futsal is a serious sport with professional players and children have this as a reference point.”
Whilst his sessions covered futsal’s tactical nuances such as implementing the Barca playing philosophy of the player in possession always having three passing options; a short pass, a long pass and a safety pass, he also recognises the transfer of this learning to soccer.
“By creating independent players who can read the game, you are creating a player that knows how to think not just for futsal but for other sports as well. If you know how to defend in futsal, you will also know how to defend in basketball, and it is the same with soccer. They are very different sports but if you create players who can think for themselves, they will also be able to do it in soccer.”
At the same time, he sees how the Programme opens new opportunities for the players. “It is very important that they don’t only see futsal as a way to develop their soccer skills. It is also a serious sport as they have seen by attending a FC Barcelona futsal game and another top Spanish pro game as well as playing against players who dedicate themselves only to futsal. Maybe some will see there are opportunities here.”
Barca is also recognised for developing well-rounded individuals as well as the player and he was effusive at how the FUTURES Programme achieved this objective. “It is a very beautiful experience, not only from a sports perspective but also a life perspective. If at their age someone had given me the opportunity of a similar experience I would remember it for the rest of my life.”
*ABOUT DOUG REED*
Doug Reed is a professional futsal player from England whose passion for the game has taken him across the world to report on top stories, and provide insights from someone inside. Visit his website at www.dougreedfutsal.com or follow him on social media via @DougReedFutsal.