Peter Hyballa, Hans-Dieter te Poel, 2015, Meyer & Meyer Sport
We just recently reviewed the first book of Peter Hyballa and Hans-Dieter te Poel and now his second book in English language is coming on the market. The book “German Soccer Passing Drills” is focused on the training of all kinds of passing types, which are used in soccer. The authors identified 20 different types of passes and describe for each one drills, which can be used to learn them. For the training they follow the now accepted model, that drills should not be repetitious but should create situations happening in games, which are made more and more challenging by restriction rules to increase complexity and a learning effect, which then can be recalled in a game. Therefore in every chapter several exercises are described with increasing complexity but for every drill variations are described as well, so that the training stays interesting. I’m not a coach, therefore I cannot judge the quality and feasibility of the drills but even for me as a layman the explanations are comprehensible and I should at least be able to judge if they are done right or not by someone else.
What is missing in the book is the bigger context, that means finding the right positions on the field to allow passing, the comparison of different passing choices in game situations, e.g., how do I crack a defensive 4-4 or 5-3 formation or how do I pass intelligently so that the receiver of the pass does not have less options for passing than I had. Parts of these aspects are, of course, covered in the drills, because they encourage the players to find their own solutions but some explanations regarding the overarching tactical aspects connected with passing would have been helpful. Maybe that is the focus of the second book which mainly covers interviews with coaches of teams with international reputation about passing skills.
All in all it is an interesting book for coaches and players. For the general soccer or tactic fan it does not contain enough information to make it worth buying.
Tactics & Game philosophy: 1/3