Blogs & Opinion


Columnists:

Most Popular Posts:

Recent Comments:

Cem Takaci on Making his mark

"Hi Guillem, all of this hype sourounding jose mourinho and the saying that the wave is swinging for real madrid right now. But once Jose leaves and it does seem that he will if not this... " View all comments

Gary Bennett on Reading crashers

"Leeds have thrown away too many games this season with our dodgy defence conceding too many soft goals.Scoring goals has not been a problem and i think the play offs are still there to ... " View all comments

Stuart Mcdermott on The thin blue line

"Jamie, superb article as always! I have to say that, as always, you're spot on. Arsenal have no momentum going into the last 5 games and i can't see them getting the results they ... " View all comments

Sam Tankard on After the disaster

"It's been the same old season for Arsenal, throwing away silly points at important moments in the season. Mers is right, out hopes of landing the title are over (again) and at the same ... " View all comments

Siyavuya Zamxaka on Awesome foursome

"wonderfull column as always...I think Madrid have a better chance of winning the Cup game in all of these 4 games. This is because Mourinho can play any system and not worry about how ... " View all comments

Joe Rose on It's handy Carroll!

"I'm a big fan Chris, great column as usual. I'm one of many happy baggies fan, who are hailing Roy Hodgson for the work he has done. Firstly under Di Matteo we played good football but ... " View all comments

Psychologists are now vital members of a football club's staff, says David Jones

Columnists - David Jones Posted 4th December 2012 view comments

Chelsea were excellent for 45 minutes on Saturday.

But half-time came and went, West Ham emerged re-energised and re-motivated and the Blues were torn apart.

Meanwhile, at the Madejski Stadium, seven goals made a mockery of two defences in the first half, but as scribes scrambled through record books the second produced none.

Helping hand: sports psychologist Beswick (left) works closely with McClaren

Helping hand: sports psychologist Beswick (left) works closely with McClaren

All because of tactics or a manager's grand plan, or is there something else at work? Have you ever considered the psychology of a comeback? Of a second half that can be the polar opposite of the first?

What about the player who in his club shirt can't miss from the penalty spot but the moment he pulls on the Three Lions twelve yards seems like 20? The distance is the same, it's still him against the goalkeeper but his mind-set has suddenly changed.

The official role of team psychologist, long the norm in athletics, cycling and even cricket, is no longer the exception in football.

David Jones
Quotes of the week

You've all heard the manager whose team have been played off the park tell the press it was his fault his team played so poorly, choosing to spare the feelings of his players.

Or the countless gaffers up and down this land and beyond who find a failing in every referee after every game because it was never their fault they lost.

Psychology has a huge bearing on our game, perhaps more than most of us could ever comprehend - but the tide is turning.

Sounding board

The official role of team psychologist, long the norm in athletics, cycling and even cricket, is no longer the exception in football; they work at training grounds, often one-on-one and sometimes merely at the behest of their employers - the managers.

They are around on match days to offer a well-chosen word of support, counsel those in need or even act as the manager's sounding board.

One of the first was Bill Beswick, a successful basketball coach in his own right who teamed up with Steve McClaren at Derby and took his theories to Manchester United, Middlesbrough, England and beyond.

This week on The Footballers' Football Show, Beswick will reveal some of the secrets that have taken him to the top of his profession, while joining him will be Lee Richardson, West Ham psychologist and former player and manager himself.

Richardson was tempted back into football by Sam Allardyce after a hugely successful spell in the same role with Lancashire Cricket Club.

Dan Abrahams makes up our panel; he is the author of Soccer Tough and a former professional golfer who now lectures others about the mental training he believes is so integral to success.

Join us if you can, it might change the way you think about our beautiful game.

Don't miss The Footballers' Football Show, 10pm, Thursday, Sky Sports 1 HD.

back to top

Other Football Experts:

Latest Posts in Football:

Gary Neville

Neville - Step back for City

Gary Neville says Manchester City must learn to see games out if they are to win the Champions League....

Ed Chamberlin

Ed: City can make statement

Ed Chamberlin can't wait for Man City-Chelsea on Super Sunday and gives his early Ryder Cup tips....

Jamie Redknapp

Redknapp: No need to worry

Jamie Redknapp isn't concerned after the English clubs made their worst ever Champions League start....

Latest News RSS feeds

Neville - Step back for City

Gary Neville says Manchester City must learn to see games out if they are to win the Champions League.

Solskjaer leaves Cardiff

Ole Gunnar Solksjaer has left Cardiff City by mutual consent after nine months in charge.

FIFA officials to return gifts

FIFA officials have been told to return luxury watches handed out at the World Cup in Brazil this summer

Champions League Podcast

Gary Neville and Geoff Shreeves reflect on Manchester City's loss to Bayern Munich on Matchday 1,

Wenger: I missed out on Ronaldo

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger says his biggest regret is missing out on signing Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo.

Features

Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa were Atletico Madrid team-mates but their routes to the top have been so different

Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa were Atletico Madrid team-mates but their routes to the top have been so different

With 64 goals between them last season, Sergio Aguero and Diego Costa are two of the game’s best strikers. Born just three months apart on opposite sides of the Argentina-Brazil border, they were even team-mates at Atletico Madrid. But the pair have taken very different routes to the top.

Champions League: Yaya Toure off the pace as Manchester City succumb to late goal against Bayern Munich

Champions League: Yaya Toure off the pace as Manchester City succumb to late goal against Bayern Munich

Vincent Kompany said earlier this week that Yaya Toure was "not far off" signing a new Manchester City deal; that's considerably closer than he got to any Bayern Munich midfielder on Wednesday night.

Sky Sports Fantasy Football: Nacer Chadli features among players to consider this weekend

Sky Sports Fantasy Football: Nacer Chadli features among players to consider this weekend

One of the key challenges for any Fantasy Football manager is to find the value away from the popular picks without disrupting the balance of your starting XI.