XVAcademy DNA

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XVAcademy DNA

The most important play is the next one

When the players used to play in the streets for hours and hours until it was dark, the mindset was different. The environment has always been competitive, trying to win every game, score as many goals as possible, with no excuses because the other team had better players, players older than others or super players that used to play for professional academies. Inside the pitch the players are all the same: football players that will play to achieve an objective. This objective is to score more goals than the opponent.

Because the games could be 2 hours long, even 3, the possibility to come back after a mistake is important. But with this mindset, the players were ready to make mistakes in their official games without any effect on their future actions/decisions. Because those players knew that they were doing something that they did 10000 times before and worked well. And because it is what they used to do, regardless of the environment or the type of game.

One of the main things you can hear in our XVAcademy sessions is: “Next one! Next one!” By saying this, we want the players to put the focus on their next action, trying their best again without giving too much importance to the mistake they have made before. If there is something to correct or to improve, the coaches will do it in a moment that the player actually has time to think about it and it can positively affect his/her future actions.

The most important play is the next one

All our players have heard this 2-3 times as a mantra every session. We cannot change the past, we can only affect the present and improve for the future. We want the players taking the information from the past, analyze the mistakes (without fearing them, taking them as an important part of the learning process as we said it in a previous XVA blog – https://www.xvacademy.ie/2023/03/23/xvacademy-methodology/) and trying different ways to solve the problem they’ve had until they find the best way for them. The coaches will help the players to identify and analyze the mistake and guide them until they find the best solution, but the positive mindset is a crucial part to be able to take information on board and use it efficiently.

When the player spends the next 2-3 seconds feeling bad after the mistake, even externalising the emotion, he is putting the focus on the past and in the end product, not the process. The end product is not always something that the player can control at 100%, so we try to make sure the players put the focus on the process and all the steps that they can control. Because if they are conscious about all the different steps involved in the process, they can give more value to what they’ve done, even though the end product hasn’t been what they wanted initially.

But it doesn’t mean that we don’t want the players externalising the emotions, because it is normal to be disappointed when you want to score a goal and miss it. If this helps the player to use more energy in the next action, from the beginning of the process, it can be positive. How we use the frustrations make a big difference and more in a sport where everything happens so quickly, without even having time to stop and think.

In conclusion, we try to help our players by showing them that we have to be ready to give our best in the next play, every time. This positive mindset can help players to use their frustrations positively, learn from their mistakes and stay motivated to give their best in the next play, every game, every day.

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