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Crystal palace

      Academy Playing Philosophy

      Teams across all age groups at Crystal Palace will:

      • Attempt to out-press the opposition: A coordinated effort from all players to press the opponents when they have possession. Players will work in unison to close down space and cut out passing lanes, limiting the options available to the opponent.

      • Play as a team and work together: Effective pressing requires players to be in the right positions and to time their actions correctly. A well-organized pressing team at any age group will anticipate the opponent's passes and movements and position themselves to intercept passes or win back the ball when the opponent makes a mistake.

      • Build up phyiscal and mental stamina: Players in every age group will develop the physical attributes to cover a lot of ground and maintain the pressing intensity throughout the game. Moreover, mental development is key, as players need to stay focused, make quick decisions, and avoid getting caught out of position.

      • Understand transitional play: With the intention to out-press and disrupt the opponent, opportunities to counter-attack become possible. This requires rapid decision-making and precise passing to exploit any opportunity that arises.

      • Attempt to out-pass the opposition: including short, simple passes to maintain possession in a transition of play, as well as long, incisive passes that break down or through the opposition's defence.

      • Develop key skills in possession: Keeping possession is a fundamental part of out-passing the opposition. Across all age groups, ball retention can control the tempo of the game, tire out the opponent, and force them to chase the ball.

      • Build up from the back: Starting with the goalkeeper and defenders, playing out from the back involves short passes, quick ball circulation, and the ability to play under pressure. Every age group will be encouraged to build up this way to create chances.

      • Exploit passing lanes: Players will be encouraged to move into positions that allow for the ball to be moved forward, and to anticipate the movement of teammates and opponents to create passing opportunities.

      • Create scoring opportunities: Throughout the age groups, passes will be made with intent to get into the final third to create chances whenever possible.