Tryouts soccer sessions are an ideal situation to evaluate and choose your players as you can observe their ability for pace, dexterity and swiftness. There are a variety of tests that you can have your players go through to do this.
It will also give you an idea of their level of commitment, their sense of competition and how intelligently they decide on what to do. I’ve written a few soccer articles on this subject, and I think these results are best recorded for individual players for later use.
- Evaluation Activities
If you have a team of players, you can group them and have each group run at their best speed to a spot that is roughly 200 meters away and back. Now you don’t have to have a target speed or time limit, as it is more important to rank your players vis-à-vis the others in the group.
So you will have the five best of the lot, then the top ten, those who are average and those who need to put in some work for further improvement. When it comes to the topic of “how to coach soccer”, most coaches will run this exercise when their players are fatigued as well as when they are not.
Another good evaluation activity in soccer tryouts is to arrange a series of cones about 25- 30 meters from the start line. Depending on how many players you have, say if your group has 15 players, then arrange 13 cones.
Now have your players line up at the start line and when you signal the start of the race, your players sprint to the cones and each picks up one and returns to the start line. The two players who don’t get a cone stand aside. For the next round, two more cones are removed and the 13 players sprint to the cones, each picking one and back.
Two more players are out. This goes on until one cone is left. You can rank the players accordingly. A variation to this exercise is to arrange the cones in a way that you can watch how the players move to reach them.
Yet another variation to the same soccer drills for youth described above is to do the opposite. Arrange the cones in a line, and have your players run to the line, touch the cones and come back.
The three players who return first are out. This goes on till just three players are left and thereafter, the players are ranked. The aim of soccer tryouts sessions is assessment, so that the coach can plan player improvement.