How to Develop a Soccer Coaching Philosophy


Wanting to create a soccer coaching philosophy but are not sure where to start? Finding the right approach for you and your team is critical. 

Given how popular soccer is all around the world, it is not surprising that many fans go on to become coaches. Coaches must have a coaching philosophy that will direct their team to success. 

A winning coaching philosophy for soccer demands careful thought of one’s principles, tactics, and objectives. The requirements and objectives of players, parents and other stakeholders should also be considered. 

This step-by-step article will walk you through developing a successful coaching philosophy for soccer, from identifying your beliefs and objectives to putting plans into action and gauging your progress. 

You may develop a philosophy that can elevate your team to the top in the right direction.

bronze statue of a thinking man linked to soccer coaching philosophy

What is a Soccer Coaching Philosophy?

A philosophy for managing and coaching a soccer team is a combination of fundamental ideas. It is founded on the principles that guide the coach’s choices. 

Coaches can use a coaching philosophy as a manual to help them decide what to do in various circumstances. Success as a soccer coach depends on developing a winning coaching philosophy since it will direct your decisions throughout your coaching career. 

It’s crucial to understand that a soccer coaching philosophy and strategy are two entirely different things. The precise tactics employed to accomplish particular coaching objectives in soccer are known as coaching methods.

Defining Your Values

As a coach, it’s essential to think and act from your core beliefs. This is what builds trust among yourself and the players while helping them reach their full potential on-field. 

The three Hs – Honesty, Humility, & Heart are a very good start when defining your values and they are essential facets of trying to build that strong foundation for successful coaching decisions.

Honest communication establishes trust with players while humility helps in assessing situations differently at all times. Lastly having heart ensures you understand where each player is coming from or striving towards and making sure they can excel during games as well as off the field when training together!

Coaching values are the ideals that drive your soccer coaching philosophy. They are the qualities that are most important to you.

When crafting a winning soccer coaching philosophy, it is crucial to consider your core values and how they will impact your players and coaching decisions. 

Values can be related to core ideas such as teamwork, respect, fairness, growth, and innovation. While these are all valuable ideas, they are too broad to form the basis of a soccer coaching philosophy. 

Instead, it is helpful to narrow down these ideas into specific values that are relevant to coaching soccer. For example, one core value might be teamwork. 

One specific value related to this core value might be striving to build a team that supports each other and celebrates success together. Read my other article on Relationship Building through Soccer.

Developing Strategies

Your approach to the game and how you teach it to your players make up your coaching philosophy in soccer. 

It should be built on years of experience, research of other teams’ strategies and methods, and knowledge on how best to coach individuals. 

The most crucial thing to remember while creating this system is to make sure that it works for YOU, and your team.

After you have established your values and goals, you can use them to direct the creation of your strategy. The specific actions you take to accomplish your goals are known as strategies. 

While creating a successful coaching philosophy for soccer, it’s imperative to take your core beliefs and professional goals into consideration. 

You can use this to decide how to carry out your strategies most effectively. Although there are many coaching tactics you can employ, they are typically connected by a few simple ideas. 

Providing players with both encouraging and helpful feedback is an important tactic. Another crucial strategy is creating a supportive, safe, and demanding to practice environment that inspires players to improve.

Communicating your Philosophy

As a coach educator I did a lot of work helping coaches create their playing and coaching philosophies and one of the most important parts of the whole process was discussing the importance of not just living it but also communicating it to people. 

I created a statement that I could remember that would give a brief outline of my philosophy using 144 characters or less (an idea I took from the original Twitter). Then if anybody wants to know the full detail I have a completed presentation.

It’s important to explain your coaching philosophy to players, parents, and other interested parties. You can communicate your philosophy in several ways, such as through actions, dialogue, and writing. 

Practices can be used to express to players the significance of your guiding principles and objectives. Also, you can have frequent discussions with players and parents on the significance of your coaching philosophy. 

You can formally present and outline your philosophy during a parent meeting if you are coaching youth soccer. Finally, you may express your philosophy in writing and with other people. 

You can better grasp your main beliefs and objectives, as well as how they relate to one another, by outlining your philosophy.

Implementing Strategies

It is critical to put your coaching strategies into action once they have been developed. however, it is important to consider how the strategies you use will affect your players before implementing them. 

Giving positive feedback to players is a key strategy used by coaches as it can boost a player’s confidence, motivation to improve, and engagement in the game. 

Positive feedback can take many forms, including encouraging words and praise for specific efforts or skills. Creating a challenging and healthy practice environment is another key strategy used by coaches. 

A safe practice environment encourages players to strive for improvement while avoiding risky behaviour. A difficult environment allows players to push themselves without feeling overwhelmed or defeated by the difficulty of the practice.

Measuring Success

Finally, once your strategies have been implemented, it is critical to assess your success. Keeping track of your progress as a coach, including your successes and challenges, is beneficial. 

Progress may be slow at times, but it is critical to remain committed to your coaching philosophy to achieve long-term success. Thinking about how you can improve as a coach is also important. 

Regular reflection can help coaches consider their successes and challenges, as well as how they can improve in the future. 

When developing a winning soccer coaching philosophy, you must consider your values, goals, and strategies, as well as how they interact with one another.


A strong football/soccer coaching philosophy provides structure while still allowing room for flexibility; this helps ensure that each player’s skills develop in tandem with their teammates’ while also enabling coaches to make adjustments based on their values and those of their team members. 

By focusing on individual development over winning at all costs, coaches can create an environment where everyone feels supported and respected which leads to more successful teams in the long run. 

With these tips in mind, developing a successful football/soccer coaching philosophy will become much easier!

If you enjoyed this article and have any questions or comments or just wish to share your thoughts.
Please leave them in the comments box and I will respond once I get the chance.

2 thoughts on “How to Develop a Soccer Coaching Philosophy”

  1. Love this Chris. Creating the right environment for us all (coaches, players and for parents to see) is critical to effective progress and development.

    Being in a challenging but safe environment allows you to make mistakes and take the learning from them without persecution or judgement. For a long time in my early days of coaching I was terrified of failure and getting things wrong.

    Now I have learnt to embrace the mistakes and take the learning from the experience. It’s fair to say, you often learn more about your team, players and self in moments of adversity, during defeats or when sessions haven’t gone as well as you would like than you do when things are going well.

    • Thanks, Dean
      I completely agree, it is crucial that we are prepared to accept our failures along with our successes as long as we learn from them both. Our philosophies are used as our guiding principles for everything we do and we don’t always get it right.


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