If I were the English Coach – as with Goalie Courage script, this one too was written within minutes of the final whistle being blown!
Also available FREE – with purchase of ‘Come on England’ script
Reading time: about 5 minutes. This could be used as part of an assembly – on the importance of ‘believing in yourself’, ‘enjoying yourself’, ‘letting go’ .. and various other tips I’d pass onto the English squad if I was their coach! (Hoping England’s coach might get to see a copy of this – maybe he could put it to good use!)
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If I were the English Coach Sample text:
- 11 Players
Coach: OK. You need to listen – and I mean listen.
(Coach looks at disgruntled-looking players and then shakes his own head in dismay)
Coach: L.I.S.T.E.N. I can see I’m going to have to spell this out to you.
(Coach hands out cards with letters on one side – ‘message’ on the other) and hands them out to the first six players who read out the letter on the front and then what is written on the back)
Coach: Read them out to me.
Player 1: L. Listen and Learn
Player 2: I. Initiate – ‘take the bull by the horns’ and go for it!
Player 3: S. Score – as many goals as you can!
Player 4: T. Tackle – and keep that ball in your possession!
Player 5: E. Enjoy – it’s the world cup!
Player 6: N. Never say never. Stay positive!
Player 7: (Muttering behind his hand) If only it were that simple!
Coach: (Testily) Whoever said anything about it being simple?
Player 8: It’s not! Not when you’ve got the British press on your case.
Coach: So? You’re in the public eye! Get over it!
Player 9: But the level of expectation? It’s so hard living up to what is expected of us.
Player 10: It’s a lot of pressure
Player 11: When you carry the dreams of a nation – and a footballing one, to boot!
Player 1: And it’s not easy ‘becoming a team’ – in just a few weeks.
Player 2: We don’t know each other’s game – not like when we play in the premier league.
Player 3: And it’s such a long season.
Player 4: We’re all exhausted.
Player 5: We’re not super human!
Player 6: We only have a finite amount of energy.
Player 7: It’s just not happening for us out there
Player 8: We wish it was – but …..
Coach: Yes? Don’t tell me you’ve actually run out of excuses!
Player 9: Ooh! That’s harsh!
Player 10: We know how much the World Cup means to our country
Player 11: The World Cup is HUGE!
Coach: So why aren’t you playing …. HUGE? (Pauses) Let me repeat to you some of the words I heard to describe your performance today. Slow. Ponderous. Nervous.
Player 1: (Sarcastically) Thanks, coach!
Player 2: Like we really needed our faces rubbed in it!
Coach: But you were! Slow, ponderous, nervous – there are a lot more adjectives I could add but I won’t
Player 3: (Interrupting) Why? (Sarcastically) To spare our feelings?
Coach: Oh most definitely not! It’s feelings you most need!
All players: (Aghast) What?
Coach: You heard me. I’m not going to make this easy for you
Player 4: (Sarcastically) Well, there’s a surprise!
Coach: You need to start taking responsibility.
Player 5: Meaning?
Coach: Meaning, nobody seemed to want to go for those goal chances today. You all seemed to want to pass the buck! Either that or strike from so far off that, even though your strike was on target, there wasn’t the remotest chance the goalie wouldn’t see it coming! (Pauses) But this is all secondary to your main problem.
Player 6: Which is?
Coach: You have to go out there, from the minute you kick off –with BELIEF and PASSION! I didn’t see that. And nor did your fans. If you had seen their long faces! Their passion comes from you. They need to believe there could be a goal any minute! They need to be on the edge of their seats! I didn’t see that.
Player 7: So, what do you want us to do?
Coach: I tell you what I want you to do. I want you to go out there and play like you do in the premier league – only a hundred times better – because this is for your country. I want you to burn with passion – for your sport, for your country, for yourself! Forget about impressing the media. Forget about those crippling expectations you talked about. Lose your inhibitions. Just play like there was nobody watching you – like it was the last game of your life and you just wanted to find out what you could do. (Pauses) Do you know what I see at the moment?
Player 8: No, but I’m sure you’re going to tell us!