Creativity & the Killjoys 

Pass – Pass – Stop – Pass – Pass – Pass – Stop!

Pass – Pass – Stop – Pass – Stop – Stop!

Talk for a while and then do it all over again!

YouTube has polluted the minds of footballing connoisseurs world wide. Albeit for the good, the bad and the damn right ugly it’s a massive source of the game today. 

Young kids can watch the heroes of yester year, the older generations can reminisce – basque in the memories of what was and shake their heads in disgust at what it is now. It also allows me to see everything I can about the game I love, admire and share with everyone I meet. 

I enjoy the visionaries of football, young or old I just love them. I grew up wanting to be entertained, I grew up wanting to entertain, I craved creative players the ones who played on the edge and brought danger to opponents week in week out. 

You would be forgiven for thinking I only admire players who pass, that’s half the battle – I admire technicians but hard work comes first. I love players who excite me, ones who have the beauty of mind to unlock defenses and create something out of nothing. I don’t see why you would hinder or eliminate players who have those little moments of magic. I have to give coaches and managers alike massive praise who encourage creativity and freedom, the one who allow players to entertain and express themselves. 

Podcast after podcast I like to provoke people’s thoughts, pull them away from the tv screens, analytical reports and coaching manuals. I will make them think about why they love the game and how they first fell in love with the sphere. 

Being creative isn’t all about beating someone in a 1v1. Visionaries, a world I will repeat time and time again – players who can play 3 passes ahead of others, ones who see pictures and how they will develop. Space invaders who pop into areas and damage teams with a killer pass, movement or goal. I like seeing players who want that ball regardless of the players surrounding them, speed of thought is important and that is developed as time goes on. 

I want players to make the defenders think, give them decisions to make. Get them with their back to goal and drive at them with pace, it’s something defenders rarely want – a position they don’t like to be in and the closer you get to them the closer you get to their goal!

I’m a self confessed admirer of all of the above. I’m at home when I see composure on the ball, elegance in attack – creativity & imagination in possesion, clever movement off it. 

Don’t get me wrong I love the dirty side of the game, you heard guest of EP09 Matty Flynn giving me a little nod for doing his dirty work for years. I loved a tackle, like to read the game – break play up and move the ball. As the years went on I became a visionary, yes the ones I keep talking about, maybe round about the age of 11/12 I had a little dabbling in the more attacking side of the game and I liked it – from then on in I would play with some beautiful players, ones who would bring the best out in me and allow me to express myself on a weekly basis. I’m not sure what they thought of me but I loved playing the beautiful game with each and everyone of you!

So here is my plea to you, a parent, a coach, a team mate – please do not kill off a player who possesses the above qualities or skill set. They may not have it all but encourage them to enjoy the game, allow them to be themselves and show off what they have. 

Give the players the freedom to express themselves, show them you trust them and believe in their ability – if they make a mistake then help them, solve the problem, fix it and tell them to try it again. The rewards and emotions when it comes off will be priceless.

On that note I’m off for a sleep with one though in my mind, Damn I wish I was still playing! 



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