While it’s true that the majority of soccer players never make it pro, it also happens to be true that over 100,000 people are making money playing soccer right now. That should at least give you a little bit of hope if you’re aspiring to make it as a professional soccer player. It’s definitely not impossible if you are willing to put in the work.
Below are some key tips for making it as a professional soccer play.
Study the Sport
One of the main issues that aspiring pros have is that they simply don’t study the sport they love enough. Sure, they’ll watch a few games every week, but there’s more to it than that. If you are not learning from what you’re reading and watching, then you’re not growing as a player.
When you watch a soccer game, you should be paying attention to both sides of the ball. You should definitely put a lot of attention on the players who play your position, but you should also be watching how the teams move and how they react in different situations.
Another great idea is read more about the sport. Chances are you are excluding an important part of training, and sometimes the only way to realize that is to regularly read about soccer. You can pick up books on the sport, or even subscribe to some soccer blogs that you like.
Know Your Position Inside and Out
This one might seem obvious, but so many soccer players do just enough to hold down their starting job. If you want to be a pro soccer player, then you need to know everything about the position you play. That means you need to know what you should be doing offensively and defensively at all times.
A great way to get to know your position better is to watch the elite players play that position. For example, if you want to be a great attacking midfielder, then you should watch players like David Silva and Eden Hazard. Don’t necessarily try to match what those players do, but instead try to understand the game the way they do.
Understand Every Formation
It is tough to fully understand even one soccer formation, but you need to go above and beyond if you want to make it as a pro. You should definitely know your team’s formation(s) first, but putting in that extra effort to know how other teams work will help immensely.
A good place to start is by looking at the most popular soccer formations. By doing this, you can get to know each team’s strengths and weaknesses so you know where you need to be when you face them.
It’s also important to keep in mind that you won’t always play in the same formation. If you study up on each one of them, it will take you less time to adjust when you switch teams or when your coach decided to give a new formation a try.
Whether you’re in the gym or on the practice pitch, you should always be training as hard as you can. That doesn’t mean that you need to overexert yourself, though. What it really means is that you should know why you are doing what you’re doing in training. For example, if you are working on volleys in practice, then you should realize that you are practicing that skill for game situations rather than to simply look good.
A good way to consistently train hard and train the right way is to constantly remind yourself why you are doing each specific training exercise. If you take the time to recognize how the training is going to help you, then you will want to train harder. On the other hand, if you are simply training because someone told you to, you’ll be less likely to put in that extra effort.
Always Be Motivated
Becoming a professional soccer player is tough, so you will definitely run into some bumps along your path. The key is to quickly get over any frustrations that you might have and remember why you are doing what you’re doing. Soccer isn’t an easy sport, after all, which is why so many players fail to make it to the highest stage.
If you are able to keep yourself motivated, you will more easily realize what mistakes you’re making and adjust your game accordingly. Even though you have a big goal, don’t forget to remember that it is a game and you should have fun perfecting your craft.