Playing opportunites for talents
Development of Talents

Playing opportunites for talents

3 min. reading time

Domestic playing opportunities

Competitions offer players opportunities to implement what they have learnt in training. Competitions and games must start with a focus on having fun and playing football, and then progress to a situation in which the best can play with and against the best at each stage of the pathway. It is crucial to challenge talents in preparation for professional football. As with training, repetition is key, although balance is required.

22 00 %

In the key stages of youth development (U-12 to U-21), girls have 22% fewer playing opportunities than boys in the top 50 MAs

44 00

On average, a 14-year-old male player at an academy in a top-20 MA will play 44 matches per season, including friendlies

22 00 %

Top 50 MAs offer 22% more playing opportunities to their young talents in their domestic competitions

Call to Action

1. Create a games programme that maximises the opportunity to play across all age groups and minimises the gaps that incur drop-out

2. Use the support of technical expertise to ensure competitions are competitive and age-appropriate, and offer different experiences

3. Integrate the use of technology to support and monitor the
development of players and coaches

International playing opportunities ­

At international level, the same principle should be applied: the best v. the best across all age groups. Regular exposure presents players with invaluable experience and a greater understanding of what is required at the highest level.

At the same time, this gives technical staff a clear understanding of the level required and what needs to be adjusted to meet these demands. Furthermore, it must be noted that international playing opportunities are not only relevant to associations, but also offer key development experiences for academies as part of a progressive games programme.

93 00 %

of MAs have an active U-16/U-17 men’s national team

40 00 %

of MAs do not have an active U 16/U 17 or U-19/U-20 women’s national team

Call to action

1. Organise more frequent competitions across all national teams

2. Develop suitable programmes for youth national teams

3. Facilitate international playing opportunities for academies

Performance Analysis

The use of video footage to support performance analysis of both the team and the individual is common across the game. Such analysis can be used in a multitude of ways, including performance analysis, match preparation and delivering best practice.

100 000 %

of the top 20 MAs use footage for match preparation across all national teams

69 00 %

of academies around the world do not use video analysis for player development

85 00 %

of the top 20 MAs use video footage for individual player development

Call to Action

1. Integrate the use of technology to support and monitor the development of players and coaches at international level

2. Support the development of specialist practitioners as part of the overall education strategy

3. Integrate such knowledge into the coaching curriculum

4. Emphasise the concept of individual player development within a team
setting in coach education