A skilful player is possibly the most incorrectly used phrase in football circles. A young player makes a couple of step overs and sends a defender the wrong way. There are cries of, "What Skill!" but he might be on an "ego boost" exhibition of a useless technique.

There are many definitions of skill in group sport. Possibly the most accurate definition of all is "The correct selection of a technique at the right time and the right place for the greatest benefit of the team."


The components of a "Skilful Player" are:


1.    Has a high range of technical skills

2.     Influences others

3.    The eternal optimist

4.    Accepts responsibility

5.    Always trying to affect the game


1. Has a High Range of Technical Skills

Dribble, shoot, turn, dummy, pass, etc, with both feet (that would eliminate 95% of players)


2. Influences Others

Encourages and sympathises, feeds information, leads by example at training and, when playing; is punctual.


3. The Eternal Optimist

Plays expecting to win, performs just as well when the side is 5-0 in front; won't admit defeat.


4. Accepts Responsibility

Does not blame team mates, the referee, a bad bounce, or luck for losing, accepts the responsibility for personal mistakes and for defeat, is not a "dummy-spitter".


5. Always Trying to Affect the Game

Even without the ball is continually making runs or taking up new positions, to bother the opposition or create spaces, NOT standing with hands on hips, with back to the opponents’ goal and ball watching.


A skilful player must have character and technical ability. You can't control the game, if you can't control yourself.


Therefore, we might say that skill is a combination of: