The Home and Away philosophy is the cornerstone of all professional sporting competitons around the world. But it is a myth. For the well prepared player and the uncompromising coach, the Home and Away concept is nothing but a sham and a remnant of the “old-days” when sport was unprofessional, coaches uninformed and players uneducated. Now, there are no longer Home and Away Games…there are just Games: Games to be fought and won by the best prepared players and the most uncompromising coaches.
Many people aspire to leading high performance sporting teams, organisations and national sporting bodies. However, most are unprepared for the real challenges of leadership – particularly of leading effectively in an environment of pressure, stress and high public expectations.
The key to understanding why professional football teams win or lose is understanding who is most responsible for the team’s performance at any point in time. In this article, we suggest there are four key points in every football season where the primary responsibility for the performance of team can be clearly identified. Ultimately, the players must accept the responsibility for winning or losing the big games at the end of the season but it is the responsibility of the non-playing members of the team to make sure the players are ready: physically, mentally, technically and tactically to win when it matters.