Belgium are ranked number 1 in the world. Why are Scotland so far behind??

RFC4ME

Well-Known Member
What is the route source of Belgium players?

Are they all Point A raised and coached in Belgium players, is there a correlation between their residency, area they grew up etc and where they are now?

They seem to have quite a scrambled patter re historical coaching rather than a concentrated design.
 

sk1n1873

Active Member
I believe it's a difference in coaching from a young age.
A few posters have mentioned it so far,
Should be coaching players more technically.
First touch, control, passing accuracy, getting the head up early, movement off the ball etc.
Also high balls should be banned altogether from a young age, a lump up the park should be a free kick to other team to force players to look for passes and play their way out.
From my own experience growing up in around youth football, yes we do certain drills that help with the above but possibly the information isn't there ie Why are the kids doing certain things.

Maybe if we are shown a drill ie 5 yard passes on the move backwards ad forwards we are explained why the drill is important to teach 1 touch passing etc may have more impact.
I feel we were shown the drill and it was just a case of right lets do the drill but not really knowing what it was to achieve.
 

omegaman

Well-Known Member
My experience of kids football is zero technique or tactics, it’s all about working hard and getting stuck in. The coaching for the most part is woeful.
That was certainly my experience growing up in the ‘70s and ‘80s, although to be fair we produced a much better level of footballer then than we do now.

I do remember watching Scotland highlights in those days and being dismayed at how poor our ball control was compared to the continentals, and, it has to be said, the English.

Now that we’ve finally ditched the route one approach (although Clarke may have designs to turn the clock back there) we’re playing catch-up to all the other nations who’ve had decades of a head start on us.
 

Houlet

Well-Known Member
In a nutshell, we as a nation are sports watchers not participants. As a youngster we used to play every lunchtime at work and in the public parks in the evenings in spring and summer. It all comes down to numbers of participants not total population numbers, hence the amount of African and South American players.
 

Dave570

Well-Known Member
There was a really really really good article in (believe it or not) EasyJet inflight mag about Belgian football. Explained it very well.

It’s basically a whole 20 year project to overhaul grassroots football and the youth game.
Living in Holland for more than 30 years I have been preaching about the grass roots football in the UK for years on football forums. The Dutch have a system where everyone can play football and not just players that are supposed to be good. I will pick out one club from a town near me. If you look at their website you will see under teams how many teams they have for a small town. There are also other clubs in the area but this lets you see how a football club is a community where parents and children are all members of a club and play football. If you are not good enough for the first team then you drop down to a team of your level. That means players can drop down teams and are not kicked out of the club as in Scotland. Maybe they will be good enough next year. Through monthly payments, sponsors and a social club where beer and wine can be served coaches with coaching diploma's can be brought in.
https://www.quick20.nl/
 

dt17

Well-Known Member
Annoyed me that the commentators kept saying Belgium are the best team in the world. Nonsense. The FIFA rankings have always been a load of shite.

It's scary that a country like Belgium who have around twice the population of Scotland are able to produce a squad full of world class players yet we're lucky if we can produce one. Not as if the Belgian league is stronger than the SPL either. I'd fancy Rangers and Celtic to beat Anderlecht or Brugge etc.
 

rodwallace

Well-Known Member
Belgium have a population of around 11 million, we have a population of about half of that. They have a team littered with world class players, we have one player that could possibly be classed in that bracket in Robertson. Why the difference? What are they doing right that we aren’t? Is it down to drink and drugs culture? Poverty? Lack of facilities?
immigrants has diversified their gene pool. ours is very small.
 

Superrangers

Well-Known Member
Annoyed me that the commentators kept saying Belgium are the best team in the world. Nonsense. The FIFA rankings have always been a load of shite.

It's scary that a country like Belgium who have around twice the population of Scotland are able to produce a squad full of world class players yet we're lucky if we can produce one. Not as if the Belgian league is stronger than the SPL either. I'd fancy Rangers and Celtic to beat Anderlecht or Brugge etc.
The entire Belgian side plays abroad, not in its domestic league. Most will have left there very early in their careers and/or come through in Holland, France or England.
 

dt17

Well-Known Member
The entire Belgian side plays abroad, not in its domestic league. Most will have left there very early in their careers and/or come through in Holland, France or England.
Then that is what our youngsters should be looking to do. Broaden their horizons.

Same goes for English players to an extent. Some of their youngsters are doing well in Germany now whereas they probably wouldn't have got a sniff in the Premiership.
 

Superrangers

Well-Known Member
Then that is what our youngsters should be looking to do. Broaden their horizons.

Same goes for English players to an extent. Some of their youngsters are doing well in Germany now whereas they probably wouldn't have got a sniff in the Premiership.
Absolutely but the players also need to be of the level required to make them attractive to clubs in other countries.

I think players themselves need to also take the responsibility for practicing their technical skills outside of training as much as possible. It’s the only way they will improve and make the best of themselves.
 

TinyRick

Well-Known Member
The smash him and lump it up the park mentality.
First answer nails it.

As a country, the attitude is more 'get in aboot thum' and 'gerrit in eh mixer' than 'pass roon aboot thum'. The entire game here is based on physicality rather than skill, and what we've been seeing for the last 25 years is that fast, technical teams are doing well while the big, honest, physical teams are falling by the wayside. The exceptions to this would be the Leicester EPL win and the Greece Euros win.

This isn't news to most of us, I suspect. However, the governing body seem to commission these think tanks that take the best part of a decade to complete, which then report back what was current 8 years ago, and the future direction of the game is decided on something that has already had its time and is now antiquated.

As long as the jobs for the boys continues, so will this cycle.
 
We are so far behind it is unreal.

One simple Rangers related example - James Tavernier would walk into the Scotland team and be one of if not the best player. Yet Tav is absolutely nowhere near the England team.

We have players like Taylor, Brophy, Devlin, Shinnie, Morgan, McLean and Russell getting caps yet they wouldn't even get near the Rangers first team.
 

RFC4ME

Well-Known Member
I do wonder where the whole smash it and get about them thing creeps in...

I have to say having been more involved with how kids are coached at a young age and had more eyes on it to actually see the process - it is rarely something I have seen taught at an unders age level.

The notion of a behavior of smash it and smash him isn't really something I see being coached.
 

TinyRick

Well-Known Member
I really don't get the PS4/XBox excuse.

They have them in Belgium and every other country. It's not just Scottish kids that play computer games.
Exactly what I was about to post mate. Too many folk trot out this line rather than actually looking at why kids don't want to play football.

It's just 'head in the sand' type thinking. Probably from people who believe music/games/movies turn folk into murderers too.
 

carlosapicella

Well-Known Member
We used to play with tennis balls at school. There were 50 pitches at 50 pitches - now there are 2.

We used to get the bus to the other side of Glasgow and play for the school then back again to play for the boys club in the afternoon.

We used to go down the 'Pubbie' park every day after school and play 3 and in or Headies.

We used to play in the street - kerbie or cross and score on the gate.

Since my son left home I've not seen a football in this street
so many good memories i remember 6 half time 13 the game, under the street lights, could last 1 hour or 3 hours and remember at first it was a tennis ball,but then i remember a coach on tv a few years later saying quote" difference between uk football and brazilian football, if 3 kids are standing with a ball in the uk they will wait until a fourth turns up to make it 2 a side then give up, if no one turns up,in brazil they will play keepie uppie"was a good point in the old days
 

TinyRick

Well-Known Member
Every country has drink/drugs yes but I just don’t see the attitude that Britain has abroad. A good example is when brits go abroad. The locals hate them for there boozy antics. I don’t see that happening when they come here. I don’t think the culture of getting steaming every weekend starting from 16 sometimes earlier exists. They drink yes but not to the level our young player people do

Same for consoles. They have them but are they as important a part of there lives as they seem to be for kids in this country
Counterpoint - you mention brits abroad. The other British teams do reasonably well.

And yes, consoles are a huge part of life for kids right across the developed world.

One look at video game sales will show you that - the 2nd highest (after China) country for games revenue is Germany, and their team aren't exactly shite.
 

dt17

Well-Known Member
First answer nails it.

As a country, the attitude is more 'get in aboot thum' and 'gerrit in eh mixer' than 'pass roon aboot thum'. The entire game here is based on physicality rather than skill, and what we've been seeing for the last 25 years is that fast, technical teams are doing well while the big, honest, physical teams are falling by the wayside. The exceptions to this would be the Leicester EPL win and the Greece Euros win.

This isn't news to most of us, I suspect. However, the governing body seem to commission these think tanks that take the best part of a decade to complete, which then report back what was current 8 years ago, and the future direction of the game is decided on something that has already had its time and is now antiquated.

As long as the jobs for the boys continues, so will this cycle.
It's worth noting that fans don't exactly help the situation. At Ibrox if a player decides to turn back to keep possession, you'll hear groans around the stadium. Most other European countries wouldn't even bat an eyelid as they see this as part of the game. We'd rather hoof it up the park and hope for the best.
 

RFC4ME

Well-Known Member
I reckon Raheem Sterling stops more kids playing football than an X Box does... happy to expand on that.

Football even under level is intense as %^*& - you can almost on occasion feel the parents looking at their kids thinking - make me 200k a week, as well as fucken win, it is utterly volatile some places.

There is mental level of desperation that drains loads of fun out of it - it is why IMO in loads of areas kids are creeping into Rugby where the environment of micro tournaments is a load more fun.

Just as an aside I reckon the need for teams to have the next must have sellable player massively hurts Scotland as well.

Again to use Rugby, all in Scottish Rugby is aimed at a player developing for Scotland rather than for club x, y or z - it massively opens up more channels for development IMO
 

TinyRick

Well-Known Member
The mentality in coaching has to change. I see it with my kids football team as well, tall boys are automatically defenders etc regardless of ability
Been the same since I was a kid.

I was (am) very tall. As a kid I spent a lot of time practicing with both feet - passing, crossing, hitting free kicks - just every time we had a game going I'd try and use both feet.

Anyway, went along to the school team to be told 'TinyRick, you're a defender, just stand at the back and heid anything that comes near you'. That wasn't my game. I protested and was told again 'you're a defender. Look at the height of you'. And that was the last time I went to the school team.
 

sk1n1873

Active Member
It's worth noting that fans don't exactly help the situation. At Ibrox if a player decides to turn back to keep possession, you'll hear groans around the stadium. Most other European countries wouldn't even bat an eyelid as they see this as part of the game. We'd rather hoof it up the park and hope for the best.
Exactly.
Instead of keeping possession and moving the opposition around being patient looking for gaps, lets Hoof it up to 5ft 8 Defoe alone against 2 big strapping hammer throwing 6ft 4 defenders, who will mop that up all day long and gift opposition teams the ball back, and or the opportunity to buy free kicks or throw ins and generally waste time some more.

Still does my head in same with just lump it into the box.
Left scratching my head as I look at the box and see only 1striker up against 4 defenders.

Some things will never change.
 

govwalker

Well-Known Member
We used to play with tennis balls at school. There were 50 pitches at 50 pitches - now there are 2.

We used to get the bus to the other side of Glasgow and play for the school then back again to play for the boys club in the afternoon.

We used to go down the 'Pubbie' park every day after school and play 3 and in or Headies.

We used to play in the street - kerbie or cross and score on the gate.

Since my son left home I've not seen a football in this street
"Ah but the facilities today" is the cry you'll hear.

Kids aren't half arsed anymore. Molly coddled and wrapped in cotton wool. They'd rather be sitting on a PS4 on FIFA than out playing till the daylight runs out during the summer holidays and so on.
 

Johnny Fontane

Well-Known Member
"Ah but the facilities today" is the cry you'll hear.

Kids aren't half arsed anymore. Molly coddled and wrapped in cotton wool. They'd rather be sitting on a PS4 on FIFA than out playing till the daylight runs out during the summer holidays and so on.
Part of the problem with that is that there are so many cars around now that kicking a ball in the street is all but impossible. On my last visit to Scotland I was astonished by the number of cars in residential streets, every home had at least 2, many of which are parked on every square metre of street. Back in the day we'd play kerby, wallsy or use the gates of an empty driveway was a goal. These days it's not an option. PS4s are not the only reason kids aren't playing football.
 
It’s a reflection of poor national health. Huge rises in obesity in adults and children in the last 20 years means we have a reduced pool of potential athletes, so our 5m population is effectively a lot lower when it comes to producing footballers. As a small nation, we are more vulnerable to this loss of potential compared to larger countries who have similar problems.
 

RFC4ME

Well-Known Member
It's a bit of an aged stereotype the whole you don't see kids playing football thing anymore, loads and loads do.

As a kid I used to hang about the park, football pitches etc playing football - I don't as much these days so why would I see kids playing football etc - but if you to a local football club etc they are loaded with kids wanting to play.

I reckon it is actually loads better these days in terms of roots into football coaching for kids.
 

govwalker

Well-Known Member
Part of the problem with that is that there are so many cars around now that kicking a ball in the street is all but impossible. On my last visit to Scotland I was astonished by the number of cars in residential streets, every home had at least 2, many of which are parked on every square metre of street. Back in the day we'd play kerby, wallsy or use the gates of an empty driveway was a goal. These days it's not an option. PS4s are not the only reason kids aren't playing football.
Can be no coincidence how the national team etc has saw a rapid decline in skill and ability along with the general health of the public. Obesity amongst kids is frightening.

Can't be a coincidence.
 
Pro youth or whatever the fck it's called has destroyed it along with the SFA's lack of vision or willingness to change and overhaul. The lack of basic skills to even control a ball or pass it 10 yards is frightening.
Also the clubs force the kids to sign a contract for 3 years when they are 14. Stops the kids from moving but the club can release them at anytime.
This stops them moving to England or into Europe at 16
Once they turn 17 and can move the ship has sailed and they are forced to stay in Scotland and end up out on loan to Alloa or Dumbarton playing on a 3G pitch every week.
We won’t improve till we accept our football up here is not the place for our top youth players to develop at 16-19yo and allow them to decide their own future at 16
 

spirit_of_93

Well-Known Member
It’s a reflection of poor national health. Huge rises in obesity in adults and children in the last 20 years means we have a reduced pool of potential athletes, so our 5m population is effectively a lot lower when it comes to producing footballers. As a small nation, we are more vulnerable to this loss of potential compared to larger countries who have similar problems.
This would apply to Wales and NI even more so with a significantly smaller pool than Scotland but they have at least as good, if not better, players than they did 20 years ago.

They would regularly finish 4th or 5th in groups in the 90s and 00s, there’s been substantial improvement. It does seem to go in phases as NI were very competitive in the 1980s, but Scotland the trajectory is just steadily downwards. It’s strange.
 
We still have this culture and mentality in Scotland of Physicality and you need to big to be a good player.

We have very substandard facilities and we are making it extremely expensive for clubs to use these facilities.

Coaching has to be to investigated because the lack of technique in Scottish Players when they make it to the top is frightening. They lack of composure, they are only thinking of the pass they are making not two or 3 passes ahead. A lot still play with their head down. A lot still very one footed.

We are small country but that is no excuse, look at Iceland. %^*& sake I think their population is not much bigger than East Kilbride but they are thriving just now.

We need at least 2 or 3 facilities like Toryglen in Glasgow, they need to be heavily subsidised by the government and the SFA. We need at least 2 in each big city
 

Prod Wallace

Well-Known Member
Not sure if mentioned, but a difference I have noticed when comparing as against other similar stature European nations is that they have a core of players who all developed away from their home country.

Iceland for example have little homegrown players. Yes they will have played some youth football, but formative football education is handled elsewhere. Similar to Bosnia and to an extent Croatia. Their best players at the very least tend to follow that path or went further afield very early in career.

We are really insular in our coaching and really should be encouraging more youngsters to go further afield.

Mind Gauld heading to Lisbon. It was like Eddie Murphy in coming to America.

This should be the norm, not the exception.

Island mentality.

Plus also, as mentioned, a truly woeful governing body.
 

Peekaboo

Well-Known Member
My son is playing 2010’s and there are a lot of good players but the facilities are terrible. If they aren’t playing on the 3G pitch then it’s grass that is never cut.
 

Prod Wallace

Well-Known Member
I coached amateur teams for 15 years and on more than one occasion was at Hampden for disciplinary stuff of one sort or another.

8-10 old guys with blazers, shirt and ties sitting around a big table. Anyone who has been there will tell the same sad story.

The SFA is just an extension of this. Outdated amateurs hanging on to positions of authority they are unqualified/ incompetant to hold in the first place.

Until this regime at the top changes the country will languish where it sits now or get worse.
Sounds like the admins on here.


LOL!
 

bluetonic

Well-Known Member
Belgium have a population of around 11 million, we have a population of about half of that. They have a team littered with world class players, we have one player that could possibly be classed in that bracket in Robertson. Why the difference? What are they doing right that we aren’t? Is it down to drink and drugs culture? Poverty? Lack of facilities?
Its because Scotland are ranked 44th that they are so far behind:p
 

dt17

Well-Known Member
Not sure if mentioned, but a difference I have noticed when comparing as against other similar stature European nations is that they have a core of players who all developed away from their home country.

Iceland for example have little homegrown players. Yes they will have played some youth football, but formative football education is handled elsewhere. Similar to Bosnia and to an extent Croatia. Their best players at the very least tend to follow that path or went further afield very early in career.

We are really insular in our coaching and really should be encouraging more youngsters to go further afield.

Mind Gauld heading to Lisbon. It was like Eddie Murphy in coming to America.

This should be the norm, not the exception.

Island mentality.

Plus also, as mentioned, a truly woeful governing body.
The scary thing is, isn't the SFA and their coaching pathway lauded around the world? Plenty of top coaches have got their badges here.
 

Amato Amore

Well-Known Member
Official Ticketer
In my experience up to 7 a-side coaching and focusing on kids development is good.

The move from 7s to 11s on full size pitches at p7 / S1 age was crazy! No longer was skills a focus but strength, size and kicking range!

Believe 9s now in place as an interim.
exactly this. just watched my sons 2006 team transition to 11s and struggle. players left out the team because they 'canny tackle'

the sad thing is that players lost to the game at age 12/13 are likely lost for good.
 
I am convinced that schools are the problem. If you want to be a PE teacher then you MUST agree to after school duty on a Wednesday afternoon and Saturday mornings while all other teachers should agree to such duties once every 6 weeks.Then every child at every year has the chance to play football, hockey or rugby against other schools in an organised system. This is the case in fee paying schools which accounts for the plentiful supply of good young rugby players coming through.If state schools had this system ( which was the case in my day) then there would be plenty of boys at 15-16 who could then be incorporated into the club systems. In New Zea!and school starts earlier and every pupil has some kind of physical activity starting at around 2-3 o'clock which accounts for their superiority in rugby. This would also help in reducing obesity.I realise this may not be full answer but it is closer to the European way and they are miles ahead of us.
 
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