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Focused for Soccer - 2nd Edition Paperback – June 14, 2010

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Focused for Soccer - 2nd Edition + Soccer Tough: Simple Football Psychology Techniques to Improve Your Game + Soccer IQ: Things That Smart Players Do, Vol. 1
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"To win at any level, players and coaches have to develop the attitudes that create competitive performance. Developing such mental toughness is an everyday process, and in this book, Bill Beswick provides invaluable practical advice. For me, this book is not just a worthwhile read, it's also a necessary reference I can consult as my team experiences the highs and lows of competitive soccer." Steve McClaren, England Head Coach --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"As an organization dedicated to education and coaching development, we highly recommend Focused for Soccer.”    

Jeff Tipping -- Director of Education for the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, www.nscaa.com                                                    

“I have always been interested in the mental side of the game, and Focused for Soccer was the first book that helped me understand the power of attitude and how to get the best out of myself.”

Jamie Carragher -- Defender, Premier League, Liverpool, FC

Focused for Soccer is the most interesting book on soccer that I have read. The discussion of the modern coach alone makes this book compulsory reading for anyone wishing to belong to that category.”

Roy Hodgson -- Manager, Fulham FC, Premier League

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Human Kinetics; 2 edition (June 14, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0736084118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0736084116
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 7.1 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #560,679 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Bill Beswick is a leader in the field of sport psychology and is especially known for his work with professional soccer teams. He has a master's degree, five years of experience as head coach of England's men's basketball team, and substantial experience in teaching, lecturing, and coaching, all of which make him ideally suited as the first full-time sport psychologist in English professional soccer. From 1996 to 1999 Beswick helped Derby County Football Club compete in the world's toughest league, the English Premier League. He then took a job with Manchester United, perhaps the world's best-known soccer club. There he worked with players and coaches to build mental toughness and competitiveness in an environment where the team is expected to win every time it takes the field.

When Manchester United and England assistant coach Steve McClaren was appointed manager of Middlesbrough Football Club in 2001, he surprised the soccer world by appointing Beswick as his assistant manager, the most senior role for a sport psychologist in the history of British soccer. For five seasons Beswick supported McClaren during Middlesbrough's most successful period in history. From 2006 to 2007 Beswick was psychologist with England's national men's team. Following a spell at Sunderland FC, Bill at present provides specialist advice to clubs in England, Holland, and the United States while continuing to develop Sportsmind Ltd., a company that has provided sports psychology services and resource materials to coaches and athletes for more than 20 years.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Stosh D. Walsh on January 30, 2001
Format: Paperback
Bill Beswick, one of the world's premier sports psychologists (currently employed by England and Manchester United) and an accomplished coach in his own right, has written a book that is destined to take a place on the priority reading list of all aspiring soccer coaches. In it, he describes the mental, emotional, psychological, and lifestyle aspects of a complete player. The book is full of tables, checklists, and charts for self and team assessment, and the book has been beautifully tailored so as to be applicable for both coaches and players. The main strength of this book, though, is its practical recommendations for every topic it addresses (visualization, self-control, team cohesion, confidence, and mental toughness to name a handful). For example, Beswick gives the example of a striker who is not scoring goals in the chapter on confidence. How does the coach, in cooperation with the player, address the situation to help him regain confidence? Beswick asserts that other components of his job description should be brought to his attention (by asking the player), and that he should be encouraged to self-evaluate his performance based on how well he completed all of the aspects of his job description, not just scoring goals. This may sound like a "feel good" tactic at first glance, but Beswick also provides case studies of specific players at the highest levels who were positively affected by this approach (In this case, Dean Sturridge of Derby County). The book encourages a holistic approach to both coaching and playing, and discusses the benefits and potential pitfalls along the way to creating that holistic balance within a team and its players. Indeed, this is the kind of coaching and type of player that must prevail in the future if soccer is to continue to grow and develop, and Bill Beswick has done the sport of soccer and those who love it a distinct service by writing this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By S. Ruggles on June 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
As a thirteen year veteran of coaching high school and club soccer, it is hard for me not to view any book with a bit of skepticism. So upon purchasing this book I was intrigued to see what Beswick had to say and not positive he could teach me anything new. I was dead wrong, he is fantastic and much of what he writes about can be transferred to sports other than soccer. I was especially impressed with his ideas and examples of assessment tools for coaches and for player self-reflection. I have already begun to create my own versions of them in order to use them with my side this fall. A highly recommended read for players and coaches alike.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Brent Erwin on November 9, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bill Beswick is arguably the foremost expert in the world on Sport Psychology, attitude and peak performance in soccer today. I have been fortunate to see him speak many times in person at the NSCAA Convention, where his presentations are always must see events, as well as in Dallas at coaching clinics. Every time I hear Bill speak I feel fortunate because I leave the experience a better coach and I am energized to get to work! Focused for Soccer will become a must read guide for you and your players as it presents a road map to success in soccer performance. The book is well laid out and is a great read with fantastic stories from Bill and all of the players and teams he has worked with throughout his career. You will go back to certain section of the book again and again to be reminded of the path to success and to be inspired. The second addition is completely updated and has some great sections dealing with the female athletes and their motivational and performance needs. This is the most influential book on soccer performance I have ever read. I recommend it and know you will love it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steve B on November 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
As I work particularly in the 'mental' field with my own players I particularly find Bill's references to 'performance anxiety' very helpful in this edition. For example - he refers to anxiety as 'information that won't go away' - very interesting as my own works centres around the same fact that 'anxious' players 'stall' on the ball and don't flow. This then leads on to the next phase when he recites the 'ballet dancer' who practices her steps repetitvely during the week, so that she can almost give a 'thought-less' performance on stage at the weekend - again very much in line with my specific work on 'focus equalling a no 'conscious' thinking situation'.

On the spot for me anyway - a lot of work has gone in to this update and provides valuable information for the insightful coach who thinks carefully and passionately about the mental side of the game - perhaps to achieve world greatness, we should do more as a nation? Steve
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Erickson on December 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
Focused For Soccer was my first introduction to Bill Beswick and his work. This book then led me to seeing his presentations at the NSCAA conventions and eventually to our campus at Creighton University to work with our entire Athletics Staff, players and coaches. This book is a must read including great stories that outline his experiences in the game of soccer. Being that Bill is the leader in the area of Sports Psychology, there is no doubt that this book will present the vital areas in which we can get the winning attitude and peak performance from our players (and staff). Between this book and other "works" from Bill, we have enhanced and improved the overall success of our players and program. I go back to the book often and you will too! I recommend getting this book and utilizing the many examples of inspiring stories with some of the most recognizable names and teams in the world of soccer. Enjoy!
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