As a coach for youth soccer and trainer, I’ve witnessed the drawbacks of being two-footed. Due to this disadvantage, many opportunities for goal scoring are missed. In soccer matches the ball is played over the penalty zone, and all the receiver of the pass needs to do is to hit the ball with their weaker foot however, due to the lack of confidence in the weaker foot, the player will hesitates to go with the stronger free spbo foot. The rest is history! The ball was mishandled because the player was not placed correctly to use the more powerful foot. What should be a simple goal when the weaker foot was utilized turns out to be an unrealized opportunity. The chances missed are often in soccer.
I saw this at my participation in the UEFA Euro 2012 Tournament. On the 9th of June 2012 the Netherlands faced Denmark in the group stage of the tournament. It was nearing the final minute of the first half and Denmark was already ahead 1-0. The Netherlands were in the game attacking. A pass on the left-hand side of the field was passed through to netherlands’ best player Robin Van Persie in the penalty area. Anyone who has played International soccer will know that Van Persie is left footed and heavily relies on his left foot. The ball ought to have been handled on an inside part of his right foot however Van Persie received the ball by using the outside of his left foot, and made poor first contact. His last shot because of the wrong first touch did not pose a problem of goalkeeper Germany goalkeeper. In the end, Van Persie missed a chance to draw even the score for Germany.
A more precise technique with the right foot could have led to an opportunity to score goals. To his credit, just four days later, in the Netherlands second group game against the Germans they fought against Germany, Van Persie scored the sole goal for Netherlands in the narrow 2-1 loss against Germany. He took the ball well with the left foot and played quickly with on his left. He advanced the ball quickly and got around four hits using his left foot, and scored with a great shot from outside the penalty zone using the right side of his foot (his weak foot). It’s likely that he was criticised for not trusting his right foot a few days prior, but being the best goal scorer that he has become; Van Persie made the right choice during the Germany match by hitting the ball using his weak foot, which gave him the chance to score his first goal of the tournament.
Being two-footed is an important characteristic for a soccer player possess and coaches at a high levels look for these qualities when they evaluate soccer players. Someone who can use both feet be considered to be twice as effective than a player with one foot. Furthermore, a player with two feet or forward is able to score double the amount of soccer goals when presented with the chance. So, soccer players with the ability to utilize their weaker foot in a way that is effective will be an asset to any team.