Pre-Season Soccer Training – The Basics

Effective pre-season training is important for all soccer players of any age, whether you play for a team in the Premier League or your local college team and the work done in pre-season can define the competitive season ahead, making the difference between winning trophies or being also-rans.

The Pre-season soccer training schedule should be planned out by the coach in order to maximise each session. Ideally training should begin at least five to six weeks before the season actually starts.

Each training session should start with a thorough warm-up taking care not to strain any muscles in early pre-season. Ideally each session should begin with a five minutes gentle jogging followed by gentle static stretching, followed by more jogging followed by a more intensive stretching session, while taking care not to over stretch and cause damage to muscles, tendons or ligaments.

Stretching for soccer should include all major muscle groups, with a mixture of dynamic and static stretches. Dynamic stretching exercises that are perfect for soccer and include swinging the arms and circling the shoulders, twisting the upper body and swinging the legs as if kicking an imaginary ball, be careful not to over stretch with these exercises. Static stretches do not involve movement of the joint and are essential for the quadriceps and hamstrings. Ballistic stretches which involve bouncing to maximise the stretch are no longer advocated and should be avoided.

Running is excellent for aerobic conditioning and should be encouraged as improved fitness will pay dividends later in the season, this should involve distance work, sprinting and running that involves work with the soccer ball. Dribbling the soccer ball around cones or across a defined area will improve conditioning, speed and ball control at the same time.

Work with the soccer ball can be extended by spending time controlling the ball with the feet, knees and head, a perfect way to practice this is to divide players into pairs and have one player throw the ball while the other controls and returns to his partner .

Each session can be completed with a short game possibly integrating two touch soccer which will improve ball control and passing accuracy and also encourage thinking and movement off the ball. Following the game a cool down with stretching should take place to minimise aching and tired muscles which will aid recovery for your next session.

During early pre-season is it important not to over exert the players and to make the sessions fun which will motivate if players are tired not too push them too much, this can result in injury and lack of enthusiasm. Another important factor for any training session is adequate hydration, ensure all the players have a water bottle and keep adequately hydrated throughout the training session.

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Javier Chicharito Hernandez – The Little Pea

Javier Hernandez Balcazar, was born on June 1, 1988 in Guadalajara, Jalisco, better known as "Chicharito" (little pea) is a Mexican Soccer player who plays as a striker and is one of the great promises of Mexican soccer.

The nickname "Chicharito" was given by his father, Javier Hernndez Gutirrez, was nicknamed "pea", due to its low stature and green eyes; and thus "Chicharito" is the "little pea." Hernndez Gutirrez, participating in the World Cup 1986 in Mexico. Chicharitos maternal grandfather is the great player Tomas Balcazar, who scored in the 1954 World Cup against France and led his team Chivas del Guadalajara to 8 Championships in 10 years. Chicharito joined in the youth squad of Guadalajara at only 9 years old. Chicharito has been playing with the youth squad of Chivas, through affiliates such as Chivas Coras de Tepic in 2005 and the Sports Club Tapatio.

Chicharito made his professional debut on September 9, 2006 in a 4-0 Chivas Necaxa game, scoring the last goal in the 83rd minute; he only played 5 minutes that game. That was his only goal in 8 games between 2006 and 2007. He also played 6 games between 2007 and 2008 with Chivas, without scoring.

In 2008, Javier played 7 games, without any goal, however in the Clausura 2009 season Chicharito scored 4 goals in 15 games with Chivas. It was not until the Apertura 2009 when the "Chicharito" began to excel for Chivas, finishing as the third top scorer, having scored 11 goals in 17 games, becoming a permanent starter.

In the Bicentennial 2010 season, Javier became the star striker for Chivas. Javier started the tournament scoring 2 goals in each of the first 3 games of the tournament, to Toluca, to Tigers, and to Estudiantes (basically Club Tecos). The latter was one of the best games of Chicharito for Guadalajara; Chivas was losing 2-0 with 20 minutes left in the game, Chicharito brave an assist for a goal and went on to score 2 goals himself.

After having scored goals against Queretaro and Atlante, Chicharito did not score a goal for 5 games, although still the top scorer of the tournament, with 8 goals. It was not until game 11 when he scored again, scoring a goal in his team's defeat 2-1 at Monterrey.

Heir to the glories of Thomas Balcazar and Javier Hernandez, former stars in Guadalajara and Mexico. "Chicharito" is the Mexican soccer star that the Mexicans fans have been waiting for. His great performance with Guadalajara drew the attention of several European clubs, including PSV Eindhoven of the Netherlands, VfL Wolfsburg in Germany and Valencia CF in Spain. However, on April 8, 2010, Javier signed a 5 year contract with Manchester United of England.

The official Manchester United website announced the news on the hiring of Hernandez and manager Alex Ferguson spoke about: "I am guided to reach an agreement with Chivas to take the young striker who so far has a prolific career for both club and country. be a great addition to our team and look forward to welcoming our Mexican player for the first time in the summer.

We are also excited to play our first game in Mexico, opening the new stadium's Chivas in July, "he said.

For now, Hernandez Balcazar would become the third-best priced Mexican player in Europe. According to the company Transmarker, responsible for reviewing the movements of players and their market value, the top valued are: Rafael Mrquez (Barcelona), Andres Guardado (Deportivo Coruna), worth 12 million euros (16 million dollars.)

Javier Hernandez, with nearly 10 million dollars puts him over Carlos Vela (Arsenal), who is priced at five million euros.

On July 30, 2010 Manchester United play Chivas in the engagement match for stadium Omnilife. Chicharito played the first half with Chivas and the second with Manchester. Chicharito scored the first ever goal in that stadium against Manchester United. The score remained 3-2 in favor of Guadalajara.

Chicharito with the Mexican National Team

U-17

In the selection of Mexico Sub-17, had a chance to contest the World Cup FIFA U-17, 2005 in Peru, but an injury sidelined him from competition and was replaced by Enrique Esqueda. Although rumors remain that coach Jesus Ramirez left him out for other reasons.

U-20

He was part of the squad that played in the World Cup FIFA U-20, 2007 in Canada. In the first game of the Mexican national team against Gambia on July 2, 2007, Javier became the 85th minute exchange by Giovani dos Santos, contributing to the final 3-0 at minute 89. He also played against New Zealand and Congo. Accumulated only one goal in 5 games with the U-20.

First Team

On September 30, 2009, Javier made his debut with the Mexican national team to Colombia. Although his team was defeated 2-1, Javier gave an assist to Paul Aguilar for the only Mexican goal.

Chicharito's second match was against Bolivia on February 24, 2010, he scored two goals., Undoably the Chicharito was doing things right which would ever get him a spot on the World Cup team.

His third goal for "El Tri" was March 3, 2010 against New Zealand, where he scored the first goal of the game at minute 53. His fourth goal for the Mexican squad was on March 17, 2010 against North Korea, having scored at 68th minute goal that save the victory to Mexico 2-1.

On March 30, 2010, the National team coach Javier Aguirre, I include "Chicharito" Hernandez in the list of players named to the 2010 Soccer World Cup.

On June 18, 2010, Chicharito Hernandez scored his first ever World Cup goal against France, just as his grandfather did 50 years before.

On June 27, 2010 in the second round match Argentina vs Mexico, Chicharito scored the only goal for Mexico in a 3-1 loss to Argentina.

MANCHESTER UNITED

A month after his participation in the 2010 World Cup on 28 July, the Mexican striker Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez played his first game as a Manchester United player, coming in as a sub on the second half and scoring a beautiful goal against the MLS All -Stars. The game ended 5-2 in favor if Manchester United.

The Mexican player made his official debut with the "Red Devils" at minute 61, when he replaced the Portuguese Nani.

On August 8, 2010, Javier, the "Chicharito" Hernandez scored his first goal for Manchester United in an official competition. Hernandez entered on the 76th minute, to score a goal that bounced off his face. Manchester United beat Chelsea 3-1, thus achieving the Community Shield. There is a lot of potential for this player and there is no doubt that we will hear a lot more from "Chicharito".

Best Football Teams In Bulgaria

Football is religion for this small country. Throughout its communist times, the Bulgarian nation managed to preserve its nationality and freedom exactly through supporting the country’s favourite football club – Levski Sofia named after the apostle of Bulgarian freedom from Ottoman rule, established in 1914. Known under many different names throughout the years, broken down and dissolved in an attempt to subdue the enthusiasm and empower the communist motto «If you’re not with us, you are against us» and stomp on the basic human rights to support a team they love, Levski Sofia football club has managed to perservere and come out on top in today’s society. It has won 26 Bulgarian Championship titles, only beaten by its rival CSKA Sofia. Famous football icons such as Gundi and Gonzo who played internationally have captained the team and have taken it to worldwide fame. Gerena stadium is the main stadium of Levski Stadium with capacity of 19,000.

The other mostly supported Bulgarian team is CSKA Sofia. Its history is a little different to Levski’s as they were the Army’s team in the past – supported by the government in power and managed by the very same. Considering they have won 31 title in the shorter history, founded in 1934, it is only fair to consider the fact that during communist times they were pushed to victories in order to maintain the control of the governing party by proving to the ordinary citizen that the leading party is the almighty powerful tool that is to lead them. If we put that aside, CSKA has provided one of the top quality footballers on a worldwide level, including Hristo Stoichkov and Dimitar Berbatov, one playing for Barcelona, reaching 4th place with Bulgarian national team and winning the Golden Ball award and the other playing for top clubs like Tottenham, Manchester United and Monaco and winning the Champions League, respectively. CSKA Sofia has a great academy for youngsters and is known to promote young footballers and develop them to become great professionals.

The most famous, risen to infamousy football club recently is Ludogoretz. It’s owner is Kiril Domuschiev, a wealthy businessman that funds the club and supplies it with a budget nearly 5 times as large as the second to it in terms of finance. Their main strategy is to acquire footballers from abroad, primarily African regions and Brazil and use them to dominate in the local championship. Results speak for themselves, Ludogoretz has been a champion for the past 4 years since it emerged in the Group A of the Bulgarian football league. They played in the Champions League groups last year narrowly losing to Liverpool and Real Madrid and beating Basel on home turf. The team resembles Manchester City and Real Madrid in terms of management and is the top club in Bulgaria at the moment.

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