Top 5: Attributes for the professional Street Footballer
Daniel Cappellaro is a street footballer, professional footballer and coach specialising in technical skills, 1v1 moves and football tricks. He currently plays for Middlesbrough Futsal Club in the FA National Futsal League in England. He has previously represented Cambio Cumbre Futsal Club in the SFL, the AFA Australian Men's team, Western Australia at the FFA Nationals, the State Futsal League 'SFL 5' at the FAFL Cup and Fremantle Muita Calma at various national and state tournaments.The sport of Street Football gave Cappellaro a platform to hone his skills and ready himself for Futsal. It has taken him around the world with trips to play in Holland, Argentina, Spain, the USA and most recently England. Gaining this experience has proven invaluable, as his skills and technical ability were noticed by renowned gaming franchise EA Sports. This led to an in-game likeness of Cappellaro, known as "D10" being created as an unlockable character in the popular video game FIFA STREET.
You can follow Cappellero's career on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook at @D10football.
A good Street Footballer is very ambitious. You want to be the best, and will constantly look improve yourself and your skills in any way. Street Football is very individual — honing your skills and expressing yourself, readying yourself for a 1v1 moment in a match. So if you're going to improve, your motivation, goals and ambitions need to come from within. Street Football is a sport a player should take on for themselves, to build confidence and to constantly have that channel in which you can express yourself, where you can learn new things and try new skills without fear.
When I say speed, most of you will instantly think sprint speed or pace to beat a defender. Now while this is a very important attribute, Street Football matches and Futsal matches are played within small spaces, therefore the speed of your feet and decisions (more on decisions later) are what will set you apart from your opponents. Good Street Footballers can change a game with a simple shift of the feet and a pass that splits the defense. You need to be quick on your feet and quick of mind.
All good Street Footballers are very creative with their moves, and also their style of play. Improvising is a big part of Street Football and this all comes from creativity. Street Footballers need to hone their tricks, so that in any given moment, when a certain skill or technique is required, it's in the player's subconscious and can be called upon. Some players refer to this improvisation by asking: "Have you got it in your locker?". You can only build this creativity by practising, building a base of tricks you are comfortable with and then trying to use them against a defender. Once this confidence is developed, you will feel more confident to use these tricks in a game.
A level of confidence will be gained from believing in yourself and your ability. You need to be confident in order to use your tricks in a match, and playing street football is one of the best places to develop this self belief. If you don't believe you can use the skill or move against a defender, how are you ever going to make use it in a match? Believe in your ability, believe in your skills and believe that no matter the outcome you will continue to try your skills and use your tricks against defenders as you know it's going to make you a better player. If your moves are unsuccessful, this doesn't mean you can't do tricks, this simply means you are learning to use them.
Once you have developed your skills, moves and tricks, and you feel comfortable using them against defenders with full pressure, it is at this moment that decision making will become the biggest difference between those players who are great and those who are good, much like outdoor football. Knowing when to use your skills, knowing when to scoop a ball over the top or play a splitting pass through two defenders. Knowing where and when to use certain tricks, a player should become very specific with his moves. For example if you are on the right wing and you're right footed, you might try an elastico that will bring you inside the defender so you can shoot on your left foot. In the same instance, if you want to go down the line, you will need to use a different skill. Decision making is also the key to becoming unpredictable, if the defender doesn't know what you're doing, then you're already one step ahead.
Ambition, Speed, Creativity, Self Belief and Decision Making — the five attributes any budding Street Footballer needs if he wants to make it to the next level. Once all the hard work is done, and you've started to skin a few players with your tricks, start to incorporate team play into your game, pick your moments to use your skills and you'll become a much better player.
Want to see some of Asia's best Street Footballers competing for the Tiger Street Football 2014 crown? TSF 14 will be kicking off in Phnom Penh, Cambodia this weekend (9 August) under the watchful eye of none other than former Barcelona, Chelsea and Porto playmaker Deco!