Eddie's Football Blog

A bizarre look at the world of football, since 2008

Archive for the ‘That Boy Got Skills’ Category

Wizzle shizzle mahnizzle, these boys sure have some skizzles…

That Boy Got Skills – Falcao

Posted by eddiev18 on December 21, 2008

Much like going to a McDonalds in Paris, it’s the little differences that make the game of futsal unique, and a lot harder than the 5-a-side football we all know and love (certainly in the UK anyway). The main difference is the ball, which is much heavier than a standard football, making it significantly more difficult to run past players, or blast the ball from distance. The aim therefore is to use quick incisive passing, and close control to overcome your opponents.

The Portuguese and Spanish-speaking nations adore futsal and, considering many of Brazil, Argentina, Portugal and Spain’s young kids play it on a regular basis, it is easy to see why the likes of Ronaldinho, Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, and Robinho are a class apart. If Sir Trevor Brooking wants a good way of forcing English youngsters to develop similar technique, in an enjoyable and competitive environment, this game is the answer… if he can get them away from their Playstations that is.

Anyway, on to Falcao. Ok, I’ll admit it right now, I’d never heard of this guy before last week. ‘You heard of this dude Falcao?’ asked a colleague at work. I hadn’t, so I was summoned to view a clip on YouTube of this 31 year old Brazilian who’s never pulled up any trees in the 11-a-side game, but is dubbed ‘the best futsal player in the world’.

Flying scissor kicks, mazy dribbles, and pieces of skill almost as mind-boggling as the appeal of Hollyoaks, if you looked up ‘box of tricks’ in the English dictionary, Falcao’s picture would be plasted right next to the description (ok, maybe not, but it should be).

I’m not going to go on and on, just watch the clip below. Look out for the cheeky finish on 0:30 secs, the shoulder control on 0:50, and the outrageous flick he uses to round the goalkeeper and score (1 minute into the video).

Falcao, king of futsal, we salute you.

Posted in That Boy Got Skills | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

That Boy Got Skills – The Kerlon Seal Dribble

Posted by eddiev18 on June 28, 2008

Kerlon, The Seal DribbleAnother week, another Brazilian with crazy footballing ability – this time focussing on Cruzeiro foward Kerlon Moura Souza (his mates just call him Kerlon though, so I will too), and the ‘Seal Dribble’ (or La Foquinha in Brazilian).

Mainly used in wide positions, Kerlon flicks the ball up onto his head with his foot and, leaving defenders in his wake (wondering how they can legally get the ball off him), he runs off down the wing bouncing the ball on his head.

Whilst the skill has been seen before – Dane Daniel Braaten has used it on various occasions – Kerlon, like Ronaldinho with the ‘elastic’, is a cut above the rest when executing it. It is a skill that requires excellent balance, and Kerlon has refined it to the point that he is able to perform it at tremendous pace, and even change direction mid-dribble.

Defenders haven’t taken to it too kindly though, and you can understand why. Let’s face it, to do this in a league match is taking the piss a bit isn’t it?!? Whilst Kerlon claims he means no disrespect, he has had to deal with defenders saying they will ‘snap’ him for doing it, and resorting to simply pushing him over or kicking him to the floor, to stop him humiliating them. I wonder how it would go down with the slightly more rugged players of the English game?

To Execute The ‘Seal Dribble’: Faced with open space ahead of you (preferably in a wide position), simply flick the ball up onto your head with your foot and, when the ball is under control, run as fast as you can down the line, until you are crunched by a 6 foot bruiser who has no time for show-ponies. No matter, you’ve just earned your team a free kick in a dangerous area… marvellous.

Still unsure of how to do it? Here’s Kerlon to show you how it’s done, and to make that drag-back you did against your work colleagues on Tuesday night look more Ian Dowie than Ronaldinho.

Posted in That Boy Got Skills | Tagged: , , , | Leave a Comment »

That Boy Got Skills – The Ronaldinho Elastic

Posted by eddiev18 on June 18, 2008

DinhoIt’s difficult to just pick one skill when referring to the sheer brilliance and unexpected entertainment that Ronaldinho provides. Although I understand that he can be frustrating at times, Barcelona fans are spoilt by the incredible talent he has.

Honing his skills by playing beach football, and the annoyingly difficult futsal as a youngster, he plays the game as we all did in the playground… no fear, wanting to try outgrageous pieces of skill, and always with a smile on his face

‘The Elastic’ was a skill I first saw him do in an advert for Nike. It’s the ultimate trick to mis-direct, and leave a defender on their ass as they try to adjust to a quick change of direction. There are other players who have picked up on the skill (like Zlatan Ibrahimovic), and can execute it just as well as ‘Ronnie’ can.

However, i’ve always thought that the most amazing thing about Ronaldinho is his ability to make even the hardest thing look so natural and easy – and this particular skill is not easy to get right, let alone perform without thinking about it. I’ve spent many an afternoon in the park with friends trying to do it, but most of the time I’ll trip on the ball and fall on my ass!

To Execute The Ronaldinho Elastic: Faced by a defender, the idea is to push the ball with the outstep of your favoured foot and, in one movement, push the ball back the other way with your instep to leave the defender wondering where you went, and you with a free run on goal… simple!

Well, it isn’t, so here’s Ronnie himself to show you how it’s done (and for all you defenders out there who hate showboaters, here’s the Nike ad where he gets nailed at the end!).

Posted in That Boy Got Skills | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

That Boy Got Skills – The Blanco Bounce

Posted by eddiev18 on June 15, 2008

Bunny Hopper - Cuauhtemoc BlancoThe ‘That Boy Got Skills’ series will profile the individual pieces of skill that I have enjoyed (and subsequently practiced in the park, until I got to the point that I realised I was never going to be able to do them!) over the years.

I think what makes these skills so impressive is that they were executed not in a park, but in games that actually meant something. I have a lot of respect for someone with the balls to do something that could either make you look a genius, or end up making you look a prize idiot. Playing without this fear makes the best players, and this series will showcase skills from the sublime to the downright cheeky.

We start with Mexico’s Cuauhtemoc Blanco. Now 35 and playing for Chicago Fire in the MLS, Blanco had a very successful career in his native country, winning many accolades, and scoring a bagload of goals. However, he is also very well known for his eccentric personality (which led to some rather odd goal celebrations).

However, outside of Mexico he was a relative unknown, having failed to make an impact in his one stint in Spain (playing only 23 games for Real Valladolid, before going back to his homeland). It was in the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France where he gained a global cult status, when people saw this eccentricity being displayed on the pitch. The ‘Blanco Bounce’ is now a recognised (if not a bit ridiculous) skill, and I remember, after he did it in Mexico’s group match against South Korea, how everyone rushed outside to give it a try.

To Execute The Blanco Bounce: First, wedge the ball between your two feet (at the back, by the ankles). Then, as the defender comes in for the tackle, do almost a bunny hop forwards, bringing your feet up quite high, and releasing the ball on the upward movement of the jump. The ball will naturally shoot up ahead of you, to run onto as you leave a bemused defender (or two) in your wake… marvellous!

Watch the video below, of the man himself showing us all how it’s done.

Posted in That Boy Got Skills | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »