Soccer has fun oozing from it on any side of the pitch you watch it from.
Whether it’s from the stands at the stadium or your couch at home, it really draws you in on every move and every kick.
And back when I pulled my soccer socks up as a kid, it was to have a piece of that fun right on my street. I scored goals, lost matches, made rivalries, and even tore my ACL. But most of all, I had fun!
And that’s because soccer really is a tempting sport. The heat in the games from an offside disagreement and the joy of scoring a last-minute stunner is unparalleled in the sporting world.
But things can also start to get monotonous and boring at times. When you hit a plateau or can’t find competitive peers to play along with, it kills most of the fun in the game.
And that’s what we’re here to talk about today, how to keep having fun and enjoy playing soccer!
How to Enjoy Playing Soccer?
Football is an art like dancing is an art, says Wenger. And how do you enjoy dancing?
You sign up for a class or join a group. And as you start picking up the paces and learn to swirl and twirl, dancing and having fun becomes the same thing.
The same applies to soccer!
A fistful of skills and a pinch of the right company, and you won’t have to force yourself to play soccer any day.
But that’s easier said than done. I’ve had some goal droughts (who doesn’t?) and remember being tense every second of the game.
And all the cursing and stressing barely helped me find a spot at the back of the opponents’ net. That was before I figured out that there’s much more to the game than just scoring goals.
After all, nobody’s a professional here!
So, I worked up strategies to help me start enjoying my time on the field. And here’s what my soccer odyssey brought me to in a pursuit to enjoy the game.
Soccer is a team game, and that’s the first thing you should be looking for!
If you randomly show up to games in hopes of starring as a guest player, it ought to get boring after a while. You won’t have the chemistry with your teammates and will lack the competitive spirit that comes with the team as a whole.
Talk your friends into making a permanent team and sign up for tournaments and leagues. Getting knocked out in the initial stages a few times will help you take your strategies seriously.
It won’t be long before you find yourself with your team at a park or your garage, marking out plans for the next tournament. You’ll even drop out and pick up different players to strengthen your squad.
And so, every time you step on the pitch, you’ll have a lust for winning and giving it all you’ve got. That’s where the fun begins!
Pick a Rival
A worthy rival makes soccer games more combative. As Matt Diffee puts it, life is more fun when you’ve got a dog in the race!
We have some of the greatest moments of sports coming out of blood-thirsty rivalries. Would Ronaldo be where he is today if it wasn’t for Messi?
And your rival doesn’t always have to play on the opposite side either. It can be someone wearing the same jersey as yours that you’re fighting for your spot on the team.
Then bring out your competitive side and make it a dog-eat-dog matchup. It’ll make you push beyond your limits and have your head in the game at all times.
Because there’s nothing more enjoyable than eyeing down your rival and beating him at soccer!
But that needs some donkey work and grinding, which brings us to our next point.
Put a Few Skills in Your Stride
Like learning and playing an instrument, you’ll only be drawn closer to soccer as long as you’re learning new skills.
Learning new tricks with the ball will make things interesting if you’re too good or too bad for your competitors.
If you’re too good, trying out new skills in a game will make things more competitive. Since you won’t be fluent in them at the beginning, you’ll mostly end up losing the ball.
And if you’re too bad, new skills in your stride will eventually bring you up to par with your competition and make things considerably competitive.
Because the keyword for soccer is competition. As long as there’s a competitive element to the games, you’ll always enjoy playing them more than when there isn’t.
Learn shooting from different and tight angles, dribbling against one or more players, or develop an eye to launch mean through balls and lob-passes.
So, tune in to a YouTube channel and binge-watch all the skills you think you can perform. And then practice, practice, and practice!
Raise the Stakes
Betting and soccer have gone hand-in-hand ever since the first two teams rivaled each other. And it has especially grown large in recent years.
That’s because a soccer game gets more intense when you’ve got something to gain or lose by the end of it. It doesn’t always have to be money!
Raise the stakes by challenging another team for a round of drinks at the bar and see how you and your friends bring out your fierce side on the pitch.
Besides betting, joining a tournament or league in your area raises the stakes even more. You get more involved in the game and consumed by it when you know you’ll be knocked out.
Or you can do something as simple as calling out your friends or family to watch you play. This gets even more motivating since you now have to back all the big talk you’ve been giving your friends!
Enjoy the Social Abode
You won’t exactly enjoy and learn soccer just by playing it. Watching the sport and being in the soccer realm makes things more exciting.
See how different teams and different players play soccer. Learn about the rules of the game, which are pretty straightforward except the offside.
Pick a favorite team and follow their fan club. You’ll meet many people sharing the same caliber as yours and make some great friends.
When you walk, talk, and watch soccer all day long, you’ll be eager to step on the pitch and try something similar.
Besides just following the sport, get yourself a jersey of your favorite team or player. And if that isn’t enough to drive you home to a soccer field, get a new pair of boots.
Enjoying the social anthropology of soccer around the world heightens your spirit to play the game!
When you see other players working wonders on the pitch, you’ll be tempted to try out the same skills yourself.
Soccer has always been very close to my heart and the hearts of billions around the world. It’s inspiring, motivating, interesting, and challenging!
And there are very few times when playing soccer isn’t enjoyable.
So, when you sense that things are starting to get bland a little, spice your game with some of the tips from above.
Joining a team, learning new skills, following clubs and countries’ games, and joining leagues keeps soccer enjoyable for as long as you play.
But you won’t make it more enjoyable by reading up on it all day. Get a move on!
The rules are simple. You’ve got a ball, and you have to put it in the back of the net. Oh, and there are eleven players you’ve got to beat, and you can’t use your hands!
Hi there, I’m Jay.
The Pitch is Ours is a new beginning for me and a stepping stone to prepare before retiring from the professional soccer team. Soccer is everything in my life! My friends and I have created this blog with all our enthusiasm, passion, and understanding after years of playing pro soccer. Hope you will enjoy it!