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Monthly Archives: January 2018

Football Players of All Time

Pele: The Brazilian star was one of the strong reasons for his country’s World Cup victories back in those days. He was only 17 years old when he helped Brazil win their first World Cup in 1958. He was also a part of the World Cup winning Brazilian side in 1962 and 1970. He is the all-time top scorer for Brazil and has scored 1281 goals in all competitions. He used to play for Brazilian club Santos.

Diego Maradona: The Argentine rose to fame in an era when brutally injuring an opponent player was not an unpardonable sin. The reason why Maradona is considered one of the best players in the world is he successfully overcame all these obstacles with his skills. He came to prominence in World Cup 1986 and guided his country to victory. His second goal against England in the quarter-final is considered the best goal of the century. However, his first goal in the same match also made him infamous in the eyes of some football critics and people of England.

Lionel Messi: Today, almost everyone in this world knows his name and convinced of his capability on the field. He is one of the key members of both Argentina national team and Spanish club Barcelona. The striker has created history for both his country and club. He controls the ball like a magician and can change the style of his natural play if situation demands. Though he hasn’t bagged any crucial victory for Argentina, he is considered one of the most treasured players in his team.

Cristiano Ronaldo: He is one of those players who have grown over years. Whenever he was criticized for his performance, he has silenced the critics with his commendable skill. He has left no stone unturned to prove it times and again why he is called one of the best players in the world. The winning member of Euro 2016 and the UEFA Champions League 2016, is one of those important players in the star-studded Real Madrid. The Portugal national team captain has helped his club reach its new heights. The striker is also famous for his regular involvement into charity work.

Leader Of The Pack

The young Rodgers enjoyed watching football games with his family. Since he grew up in northern California, he grew up wanting to become like one of the 49ers. His father was the one who taught him how to play football and all his life, he wanted to become a football player. Aaron Rodgers didn’t begin his career with a blast. He wasn’t noticed immediately after high school, even if he was a star and an A-grade student in his local school. His football skills improved further in college and he was eventually noticed by the Division I schools. During his college freshman year, he had an amazing record of 26 touchdowns.

Everybody thought that Rodgers would eventually be taken by the 49ers after college, but the Green Bay Packers were the ones who took him in. Since Rodgers’ first day with the Packers, he proved his worth as a quarterback to the team. The formidable and determined Aaron Rodgers led the Green Bay Packers to win Super Bowl XLV. He was also named as Super Bowl MVP at that time. Last year, he was the Associated Press Athlete of the Year and was one of the career leading passers with a rating of 104.1 and a post-season rating of 105.5. Rodgers, to this day, is still one of the leading NFL quarterbacks and one of the most highly paid NFL stars.

Like many other highly paid athletes, Aaron Rodgers also supports charities. Though he doesn’t have a charity named after him, he is actively involved with the MACC Fund or the Midwest Athletes Against Childhood Cancer Fund. When asked about what the secret of his success is, he would simply attribute it to his unwavering faith in God. He is never ashamed to talk about his Christianity. Aaron Rodgers can be considered as a simple man outside of the field. This is most probably one of the reasons why his fans love him so much.

Nutrition for Soccer Players

Cut back on processed foods

It is beneficial to restrict the intake of processed foods and instead eat a well-balanced and healthy diet that consists of high fiber carbohydrates, whole grains, fruits and vegetables.

Eat the rainbow

Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables at mealtime to increase the ability to introduce more vitamins and minerals to the diet. The widest range of colors is a best option. Plus, this is a great way to show young soccer players that eating healthy can be fun and colorful.

Healthy fats

The right kinds of fat can be heart-healthy. Any healthy diet can benefit from a varied range of healthy fats, such as flaxseed oil, fish, avocado, seeds, natural nut butters and olive oil. About 20 to 35% of your calorie intake should come from healthy fats.

Breakfast every day

A great way to jump-start the metabolism for the day is by eating a healthy breakfast. A couple of the great breakfast options to fuel the body include muesli which is packed with fruits and whole grain to provide slow-burning energy, while oatmeal is a further option that is rich in carbohydrates.

Stay hydrated

Stay hydrated to keep your body running smoothly. Any signs of dehydration can have a significant impact on your ability to maintain your performance while playing. Ideally, you should drink about 3 liters of water, green tea or other non-caloric beverages every day.

Post-workout recovery

After completing a workout, make sure to eat a post-workout shake or meal that is rich in both protein and carbohydrates.

Perform a Kickoff

Pretty obvious one; you need to place the ball on the kickoff tee. Easy enough, right? When you set it up on the tee, you want to make sure that the ball is relatively straight up and down; you do not want much of an incline. If you have the ball straight up, there is a better chance that you will get height on your kick as well as distance. If you set the ball down with an incline, you may get more power behind the kick, but the kick will end up being a line drive, which may be fine for a field goal, but on a kickoff you want more of a loft. There should not be much of a problem getting the ball to stay unless there is a strong wind.

Take your steps, which you should have prepared before you go to do the actual kickoff. Starting with your plant foot next to the ball, take a certain amount of steps back and to a side so that you can feel comfortable and build up power approaching the ball. Personally, being a lefty I choose to take nine steps back and 5 steps to the right. A righty should obviously be taking their steps to the left after the steps back. The steps you will be taking are not normal walking steps; you want to extend your strides for the steps a little because when you approach the ball you will almost be at a run, which are longer strides than walking. Once you think you have the right steps for you, make sure that you can approach the ball with your steps intact. Meaning you can approach the ball fluidly and have your steps end with your plant foot right beside the ball.

Once you have your steps ready and you are back waiting to kick, you become the coach of the field. It is your responsibility to look around at your teammates on the field and address anything that needs to be corrected. The third step of a kickoff is to make sure everyone is in the right place and your team is ready for the kick. Examples of this could be making sure that everyone on your kick off team is onsides, making sure you have the correct amount of people on the field, and making sure everyone is on the side of the field that they are supposed to be on (to the left and right of you). Failing to recognize any of these could lead to a penalty against your team, and needless to say this is not the goal. The final part of this process is somewhat optional, some teams do it and some do not, but when everyone is lined up and appears to be ready, you will look to your right and scream “ready on the right?” and then look to your left and scream “ready on the left?”, this lets them know that it is show time.

The shortest and possibly most important, becoming mentally prepared. This will make or break your kick. Once your steps have been taken, you only have a couple of seconds before the ref signals that it is your time to kick, and then you have no choice but to go. If you are nervous or panic during those seconds, you are going to ruin your kick. You need to be confident that your kick is going to go well, as corny as it sounds, think positive thoughts. Those few seconds will feel like an hour, take advantage of it. I have found that taking a nice deep breath is a great way to become centered in and relaxed right before starting the approach to the ball. The deep inhale in a way just blocks out all the outside noise and clears your mind, which prevents you from overthinking your situation. When you become zoned in and mentally prepared, you will be ready to kick.

The kickoff is the approach to the ball. When you are back ready to kick the ball and have made sure that everyone is where they are supposed to be, you can finally begin the kick process. When you start the approach, you want to start slowly at a slow jogging pace, some people actually prefer walking steps; choose whichever is more comfortable for you. You will maintain this slow pace for the first couple steps, but once you get closer to the ball, you will have to increase your speed, therefore building the momentum. The more momentum you can build while approaching the ball, the farther your kick will go. Make sure your steps are in nice fluid movement so you are not caught stutter stepping to try to fix your steps and losing all kicking momentum.