Soccer Coaching & Soccer Training

Welcome Soccer Coaches!  This Soccer Coaching / Soccer Training site provides access to detailed instruction and analysis of advanced soccer tactics and teamwork with emphasis on creating space as well as the paths and timing of supporting runs. Soccer Coaching / Soccer Training Guide Outline:  keeping possession, creating space, effective passing, fewer intercepted passes, creating better passing options, support runs, diagonal runs, decoy runs, overlapping runs, and scoring more goals. Additional information includes Striker training drills, technical-tactical shooting drills, training and conditioning of the soccer athlete, athletic training, sports medicine, sports psychology, soccer gear, soccer / football terminology, and other resources for soccer coaches.  Please support this site by visiting one or more of my sponsors.

Coaching and Training Overview

I have thirty years of soccer coaching and training experience includes middle school, high school, youth and adult premier club, college, and Olympic Development Program. Head coaching includes soccer, swimming, wrestling, volleyball and basketball.

Experience & Qualifications:

Head Premier Youth and Adult Club Soccer Coaching & Training

Currently coaching and training the Spartans of the Central Florida Football Club, Orlando Elite Premier League. Previous clubs include the Lumber River (Gunners), North Carolina; Sunrise (Sunrise Youth), Florida; Highland (Huron Valley), Michigan; Livonia (Livonia Youth & Michigan Wolves), Michigan; Omaha (Gladiators), Nebraska; Sylvania (Pacesetter), Ohio. Teams won three state championships, and competed in the U.S. Canada, and Europe. Coaching experience includes boys premiere club teams from U10 through U19 as well as adult, and girls U19.

Soccer C
ertification, Soccer Training and Soccer Coaching Awards:

• 166 hours of training in advanced soccer coaching, training  and team management techniques
• Former players included members of the U.S. Olympic Team, U.S. Pan American Games team, World University Games team, and U.S. National Youth Soccer Teams
• Former University of Toledo Athletic Trainer
• Former Ohio and Nebraska State Team Coach for the Olympic Development Program
• Named Coach of the Year by the Northwestern Ohio High School Coaches Association
• Hold the National Diploma from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America
Three successful tours of Europe coaching premier travel teams.
• Named All Area Coach of the Year in southeastern Michigan
• Hold a National Coaching License from the United States Soccer Federation
• Minored in Athletic Training and Interscholastic Athletics
• Named Regional Coach of the Year by the Michigan High School Soccer Coaches Association
• Record of 45-9-8 for a .73 winning percentage during three seasons as a Michigan Class A Head Boys Varsity Soccer Coach
• Former high school players I have coached who are former professional players in the MLS: Michael Gentile, Scott Lamphear, Jeff Cassar, and Jason Kreis.
Other notable former players I have coached include: Douglas Mitchell (Furman), and Kenyon College Hall of Fame inductee Michael Donovan.
Former Athletic Director of the Mid American Indoor Soccer League
2006 North Broward Prep School, Coconut Creek, FL. Head Boys’ Middle School Soccer Coach.

2006 Mid-State United, Red Springs, NC. Head Boys’ Soccer Coach.
2006 Flora Macdonald Academy, Red Springs, NC. Head Boys’ & Girls’ Soccer Coach.
2005 Gateway Charter School, Ft Myers, FL. Head Boys’ Soccer Coach. Head Boys’ Basketball Coach. Head Boys’ Volleyball Coach. Undefeated league champions in soccer and volleyball.
2003 Cardinal Mooney High School, Sarasota, FL. Assistant Coach. State Finalist. Ranked #6 in the Southeast Region, and #2 in the final state poll 2003. Record of 22-1-2.
1995 Linden High School, Linden, MI. Head Girls’ Soccer Coach. District Champions.
1990-1993 + Winston Churchill High School, Livonia, MI. Head Boys’ Soccer Coach. 1990 State Finalist with a final record of 20-1-1
1989 Harry A. Burke High School, Omaha, NB. Head Boys Soccer Coach. State Class A semi-finalist.
1986 St. John’s High School, Toledo, OH. Assistant Boys Soccer Coach. Class AAA district finalist. Undefeated league champions.
1983 – 1988 Staff Soccer Coach Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH.
1983 St Francis De Sales High School, Toledo, OH. Head Boys Soccer Coach. Undefeated league champions.
1981 First high school Head Boys Soccer Coach head assignment at Bowsher High School, Toledo, Ohio. Undefeated league champions.
1979 – 1980 Initiated club soccer at both Sylvania Northview and Sylvania Southview high schools club. Success prompted the Sylvania school board to add varsity programs at both schools in 1981.
1978 – 1981 Referee Administrator and trainer of the Sylvania Area Recreation Coalition in Sylvania, Ohio.

“I have known Coach Mason since 1978, and can extend the highest praise and recommendation. His early involvement with our referee program, to his involvement with basic team organization, to coaching our elite travel teams to several state championships, major tournament championships, and numerous league championships, is now legendary. Coach Mason played a major leadership role in the success of our programs. Your gain will be our loss, but we now have in place an excellent program thanks of the in great measure to the unceasing efforts of Coach Mason.”

– Charles Scharte, President – Pacesetter, Inc., CEO of SYSA

Supporting Runs & Creating Space by Mark Mason

My new Supporting Runs and Creating Space Interactive eBook is an advanced soccer tactics and teamwork coaching guide designed to help coaches at all levels develop more effective passing and dribbling options for the player in possession of the ball. Keys to the success to maintaining possession and effective attacks are good passing and receiving skills, proper support, creating space for yourself and teammates, effective ball movement, and the path and timing of supporting runs. The key concepts are described in detail and illustrated via animated and actual match video clips apply to any formation. These tactics promote a possession style of play.

Coach Mason


CFFC Spartans Coach Mason on right

Spartans of the Central Florida Football Club


Recommended Soccer Coaching and Soccer Training Courses and Clinics:

  1. Online Master’s in Coaching Education: The Patton College of Education
  2. The U.S. Soccer’s Digital Coaching Center (DCC), is a state-of-the art online educational platform. The DCC allows coaches to create a personal profile, register for courses, communicate with technical staff, take part in online courses, create session plans with an online graphics tool, access an archive of U.S. Soccer training sessions and much more.
  3. A TOPSoccer Coaching Course is offered by some State Associations and is a four-hour introductory course for coaches in TOPSoccer. This course guides both the novice and experienced soccer coach in providing a fun growth experience for soccer players with disabilities. The course presents information on player characteristics, the qualities of a good coach, how to utilize the TOPSoccer Buddy and modern coaching methods.
  4. In addition to the youth coaching courses FIFA can provide, support is granted on a conditional basis for the creation or optimization of domestic youth football competitions. The support includes equipment, financial contributions, and consultancy.  See also the FIFA Youth Coaching PDF.
  5. The United Soccer Coaches courses are designed with flexibility in mind for coaches to choose their desired level of entry based on previous experience. Development courses all offer unique material and can be taken in any order. United Soccer Coaches offers a comprehensive yet focused curriculum inclusive of all coaches at all levels of the game. Our staff coaches approach all participants in United Soccer Coaches Education programs as colleagues with whom we share the coaching journey. Collegiality and mutual, lifelong learning underpin all we do in our coaching education. Our mission is to help our fellow coaches grow and develop in a positive and professional manner in each and every course we teach.United Soccer Coaches Academy offerings are geared toward enhancing the development of the broadest cross-section possible of our membership. You may enroll in a course geared to the level of player you coach. We celebrate the immense knowledge current and former players bring to the craft of coaching, we embrace coaches new to the game and we honor the wisdom of veteran coaches.
  6. The FA Coaching Course pathway is divided into three principal strands. The first entry point and foundation for all coaches is Level 1 which is a certificated course and allows progression through Level 2 and Level 3 up to the UEFA A Licence which is the qualification held by the managers of high level clubs and national teams. The second strand offers specialized training courses concentrating on targeted areas of the game such as football for the disabled and goalkeeping. The last strand focuses exclusively on the youth game and the need for different skills and tactics as players develop physically and mentally and progress through the game. The FA Learning coaching pathway here shows the options available. There are two types of FA coaching courses available, local and national. The local courses are run by individual county football associations and tend to concentrate on the earlier stages of coaching development. Levels 1 and 2 are always run on a local basis because there is such a huge demand for these courses all over the country and there are literally dozens of opportunities to join a course. It can vary because each county FA organizes their courses slightly differently but as a general rule, Level 1 and 2 are run over two (usually consecutive) weekends which allows them to easily fit in with work commitments etc. or over weekends with short evening sessions.
  7. The Soccer Champions Coaches’ Clinic, February 21-23, 2019 takes place at the spectacular Mohegan Sun Resort & Casino. This clinic for coaches of all levels features multiple days of world-class coaching instruction, on-field demos and special topic break-out sessions led by some of soccer’s best minds. Our 2018 presenters include: U.S. U20 Men’s National Team Coach & U.S. Soccer Youth Technical Director Tab Ramos; Amanda Cromwell – National Champion UCLA Women’s Soccer Coach; Wake Forest University Head Men’s Coach Bobby Muuss; Dick Bate – FIFA and AFC Instructor and FA Staff Coach (back again by popular demand!); National Champion Women’s Head Coach Becky Burleigh of the University of Florida; Willie McNab – Celtic FC International Academy Manager; Mass Youth Soccer Technical Director Ian Mulliner; CJSA Director of Coaching Mario Prata; and, Ian Barker – United Soccer Coaches Director of Coaching among others and, of course, National Champion Collegiate Coach and Clinic Founder Ray Reid among others. As part of our 2018 program, we will honor and remember Tony DiCicco’s commitment to soccer and coaching education.Soccer Champions offers attending coaches the opportunity to earn a range of coaching education licenses and diplomas, including: U.S. Soccer’s Grassroots Licenses – 7v7, 9v9 & 11v11 (you can earn all 3 over the weekend) as administered by event partners CJSA and Mass Youth Soccer, the United Soccer Coaches Advanced Technical Training Special Topics Diploma and, the United Soccer Coaches Special Topics Diploma: Integrating Goalkeeper Training; and, the Soccer Champions “Developing Positive Leadership” Diploma. In addition to our world-class coaching education curriculum, the clinic also features an extensive Exhibitor Zone featuring all the latest soccer gear. And, it all takes place at the spectacular Mohegan Sun Resort in Uncasville, Connecticut, which is an incredible place to meet and network with your coaching colleagues.
  8. Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) develops through resources for youth and high school sports coaches, parents, administrators and student-athletes. In addition to 1,500+ free audio-video and printable tips and tools at, PCA has partnered with roughly 3,500 schools and youth sports organizations nationwide to deliver live group workshops, online courses and books by PCA Founder Jim Thompson that help those involved in youth and high school sports create a positive, character-building youth sports culture.PCA resources, which have reached more than 8.6 million youth, strive to transform high school and youth sports into a Development Zone® culture, where the goal is to develop Better Athletes, Better People and the following become the prevailing models in youth and high school sports. The Positive Coaching Alliance mission is to transform the youth sports culture into a Development Zone® where all youth and high school athletes have a positive, character-building experience that results in better athletes and better people.
  9. Glazier Soccer Clinics applies 40 years of coaching clinic experience to create a new kind of Soccer Clinic. Our Priorities: Top-notch speakers. Successful, experienced coaches speak at our clinics. We give you a chance to evaluate them, and they are only invited back if you rate them highly; Depth and breadth of topics. With more than 50 sessions at the clinic, we offer coaches the most variety; Practicality. We ask our speakers to deliver only real, usable strategies, not their booster speeches. We want every session to help your athletes win more on the soccer field; A team building experience. Bring your whole coaching staff to the clinics. You’ll be amazed at what a dedicated, high-energy weekend away can do for camaraderie. Giving you the most for your dollar. Unlike any other soccer clinic, we offer a Staff Season Pass which includes all your high school and feeder program coaches to any or all of our clinics for one low price.
  10. Want Practices That Players Enjoy? And save time while preparing them?  Join the Coerver Skills Revolution. Focus on technical proficiency and skillful play. Make Ball Mastery the foundation of your game. Use competitive drills and games to develop skillful, spirited players. Encourage players to make their own decisions in the game. Be realistic about your performance whether you win or lose. See both as a chance to develop. See ‘success’ as a process not a destination. Win or lose show good sportsmanship. Honor the game and keep developing players with distinctive Coerver skill and spirit.  Get an Official Coerver Coaching Youth Diploma 1 Online Certificate of Completion. Have an updated approach to how you teach the skills of the game to your players, and a new arsenal of drills and games that can help you and your players enjoy The Beautiful Game to it’s fullest extent.
  11. Here at the European Sports & Training Academy we produce professional training videos featuring drills and background info for every soccer coach, player and fan out there. We started out in Europe, now we’re headed for the US! Prepare for Europe’s best soccer coaches, as they will help you and your team to become better soccer players and coaches. Numerous professional athletes have already joined our academy’s team of experts, including German Bundesliga legend and UEFA pro license coach Ingo Anderbrügge as well as several other high profile coaches and professional soccer clubs from Germany’s highest national league, the Bundesliga. The European Sports & Training Academy is a proud partner of the Bavarian Football Association and the German Football Coaches Association. We have teamed up with a number of DFB-licensed youth academies. (The DFB is the German Football Association) In cooperation with professional athletes, coaches and experts we develop training programs and drills for fellow athletes and coaches. Our selection of high-quality training videos allows you to plan and conduct effective soccer drills and professional training sessions. Due to our carefully selected group of coaches we can guarantee to provide you with expert knowledge and state-of-the-art European soccer training methods. We try to appeal to recreational athletes as much as to pro-level competitors. This is your opportunity to reach your own personal athletic goals with the help of our professional expertise and support from Europe’s finest soccer personalities.
  12. The ICA Online Coaching Academy. The ICA is the first ever soccer organization worldwide to develop and implement an Online Coaching Academy. Establish on February 6th, 1997, The International Coaches Association (, was the first soccer website on the Internet dedicated solely to “Online Coaching Education.” Since then, The ICA has registered over 15,000 members and has certified thousands of coaches in over 107 countries through its Online Coaching Academy. Through The ICA, Coaches are able to receive training online and learn from the best professional’s world wide. Our online courses are the first of their kind and have set a new standard for international coaching education. The ICA Online Coaching Academy is the fastest, most convenient way for you to gain the knowledge and skills necessary when it comes to developing your coaching ability. Now you can get certified at your convenience and at your pace. The International Bronze Course is directed towards coaches who are training youth players ages 5 through 9 years. This is an introductory level course, designed to improve the coaches understanding in the areas of Coaching Methodology, Team Management, Skill Development, Health and Safety and Laws of the Game. This online course, does exceed the requirements of many national schools and academies introductory certificates worldwide. This online course is FREE with membership to The ICA. Why wait get ICA certified today!  The ICA Fitness and Conditioning Course is the first ever online certification for soccer fitness training. The course is specifically designed to improve the coaches understanding in all the important areas of fitness training. Directed by Roger Spry – Fitness coach for the Austrian national team in the 2008 European Championships. You will learn about Warm Ups, Isolation Training, Speed Development, Strength Training, Stamina Training, Flexibility Training, Rhythm Training, Mobility Training, Cool Down’s, Fitness Testing and much more.


Recommended U.S. Soccer Camps

IMG Academy boys’ soccer camps, ideal for campers between the ages of 10-18, focus on individualized player development within a team setting. We provide all-encompassing training, including position-specific, strategic, physical and mental training, and an encouraging learning environment, so that you can make your off-season legendary!

IMG Academy girls’ soccer camps, ideal for campers between the ages of 10-18, will focus on position-specific drills, strategy sessions, competitive scrimmage play, and teaching the intricacies of the women’s game. We have a proven track record of helping players from middle school to the pros reach their true potential on and off the field.

Recommended International Soccer Camp

The Tahuichi Way International Youth Soccer Camp is a great way to improve your game and become immersed in a total “soccer is life” culture. The Tahuichi Way program is for boys and young men aged 13 – 22, and girls and young women aged 15 – 22. Also, this program is ideal for college players who want to prepare for their college season. Top coaches help you reach your full potential in strategy, skills and fitness. See what other soccer players have to say about Tahuichi’s unique, enriching, “total soccer” experience. Star players Marco “El Diablo” Etcheverry, Joselito Vaca, Jaime Moreno, and many others got their start at the elite Tahuichi Soccer Academy in Bolivia. Let Tahuichi help make you a champion, too!

Epic Sports Soccer Equipment