It’s not every day you get to learn from the 2010 MLS Coach of the Year. But today was my day. The one and only Schellas Hyndman took center stage this morning, and it was awesome.
4-4-2 in the Classroom
The day started in the classroom, where Schellas took us through a tactical breakdown of the 4-4-2 system of play, a shape he knows well as that’s what he employs with FC Dallas. We started with the basic principals of the game.
Offense: Penetration, support, width, mobility and improvisation.
Defense: Pressure, cover, compactness, balance, and control & restraint.
Schellas also emphasized the importance of early, clear and specific communication.
The bulk of the classroom session that followed was the strengths and weaknesses of a 4-4-2 shape. It was awesome to see his video examples from his days coaching SMU and FC Dallas, and big props for including that bit. I LOVE video analysis and really enjoyed seeing a pro break it down.
4-4-2 on the Pitch
The truth is, for me, that first session on the pitch is always a bit intimidating. Maybe that’s why I didn’t raise my hand right away when Schellas asked for volunteers, or maybe it’s that by the time I worked up the courage to do so all the bibs were taken… but regardless I got a pitch-side view of the session and got to take really good notes. Looking back on it, I’m glad it worked out this way as I have the entire session drafted in my notebook for future reference.
The theme, 4-4-2, carried from the classroom onto the field, and we started with defending. That session lasted a solid 90 minutes and the guys seemed fairly knackered by the end. But after a 10-minute water break, we moved right into an attacking session which lasted about half the time.
A True Original
Here are two Schellas Hyndman quotes from the classrooms session today:
“I would like to be worried, as a coach, more about them than about us.”
“If it’s not your life, it’s your hobby.”