The truth is, coaching youth soccer teams is not an easy task. Not only do the youngsters look for soccer knowledge from you, but they also depend on you to help them win.

If you are running out of ideas to train and guide young athletes, it is time to take support from some of the best books for soccer coaches. 

Listed below are some easy-to-read options on youth football coaching. These books will give you plenty of ideas along with the basic soccer knowledge needed for managing small-sided games. 

Take a look.

soccer book for dummies

1. Coaching Soccer for Dummies

Written specifically for youth soccer coaches, this book starts with soccer fundamentals and then delves deep into soccer coaching philosophy.

The author, Greg Bach, is the director of communications for the National Alliance For Youth Sports and provides plenty of practical pointers to guide modern soccer coaches.

In fact, the book is also a great read for newbie soccer players and fans who want to get a grasp on soccer fundamentals. It is easy to read and there are plenty of images to help you understand the soccer fundamentals.

Besides, it provides practical tips on communicating with parents and outlines some practice sessions. Overall, if you want to start your soccer training career with 5-8-year old players, this is a great read.

soccer guide to training

2. The Coach’s Guide to Teaching

Doug Lemov was a former school principal whose previous book, Teach Like a Champion was a bestseller. While this book is not written specifically for professional soccer coaches, Lemov uses the lens of a soccer coach to analyze the topics.

What stands out is the in-depth handling of effective teaching techniques and the understanding of team culture. Lemov also includes plenty of excellent quotes from the top players, coaches, and experts, which are great takeaways.

Among the six chapters in the book, I found two especially beneficial for soccer coaches. These are the importance of giving feedback and understanding the breach between “I taught it” and ”They learned it.” 

Even though this is not the book for learning the fundamentals of soccer, it teaches you about using cognitive science for sports coaching. It is an excellent read for any sports coach and even teachers. 

making soccer fun book

3. Making Youth Soccer Fun 

This is an easy-to-read book for coaches handling U4 and U8 soccer teams. The tips and suggestions provided are also great for parents who are uncertain about guiding their kids toward soccer in the initial stages.

The book deals with all the basic knowledge required for coaches, including soccer rules, formations, and team management.

Being a soccer player and coach himself, Paul Sabiston has added multiple training drills and practice suggestions. These are a great help for coaches in planning training sessions.

In addition, there are plenty of tips for new coaches who want to combine soccer practice with fun. The tips provided are also applicable to both indoor and outdoor soccer. 

In short, this is not the book for a head coach looking for advanced soccer tactics. But it has enough valuable content that helps both newbie players and coaches to enjoy the beautiful game.

complete keeper soccer book

4. The Complete Keeper

Written by Peter Greiber, a veteran goalkeeping coach of the German club FC Cologne, this is a practical goalkeeper training handbook for beginners. 

Starting from the basic goalkeeping principles, the author moves into the techniques related to handling various types of moving balls.

All the primary goalie moves from deflecting and punching the ball to attack-building, are covered in detail.

Greiber then moves into the various training methodologies for players of different age groups. The necessary exercises along with sample practice sessions are also added. 

If there’s one position in soccer that needs specialized tips and practice, it is the goalie. The book offers excellent coverage of the subject, making it one of the best books for soccer coaches for goalkeeper training.


soccer coaching book

5. Soccer Coaching 

Dylan Joseph is a soccer coach in Michigan who has authored the 14-book Understand Soccer series. This soccer training book is for coaches who want to gain confidence in handling players as well as parents. 

For any coach building a bond with the players and handling difficult parents are some of the biggest challenges. The book offers practical tips that will help you to tackle such issues effectively. 

The author also covers the ways coaches can help players to perfect basic moves like soccer including shooting, passing, and dribbling. He also delivers information on the basic soccer formations. 

Overall, it is one of the most practical coaching soccer books you can buy on Amazon. This one is a must-read if you want to guide the kids toward their top potential.


masters of modern soccer

6. Masters of Modern Soccer

Ever wanted to know what the top soccer minds think while giving their best as players and coaches?

In this book, soccer journalist Grant Wahl presents a behind-the-scenes look at how professionals handle the various aspects of the game. Personally, I do not think any other soccer training book offers as much detail as you will find in some sections of the book.

Technically, this is not in the same category as the other best soccer coaching books. But the analysis of modern soccer from the first-person perspective will provide plenty of insights to coaches about guiding their players. 

Moreover, the engaging writing style of the author makes it an enjoyable read. I only wish it had more input from women’s soccer players.

basic soccer skills book

7.  Basic Soccer Drills for Kids

Soccer drill books are a great way to learn new ways for keeping the players growing continuously. Basic Soccer Drills for Kids is written by a soccer coach and provides comprehensive guidelines for player development.

To start with, the author points out the necessary soccer skills that coaches should focus on. 

Then he provides step-by-step guides for various drills related to ball control, shooting, defending, and more. Additionally, he also provides insight into the mental aspects of soccer and offers tips for the parents.

Note, not all the drills in this book might be suitable for U8 groups. That allows coaches to use them for even older players.

Don’t expect to find 150 drills though. There are around 25 actual drills along with various skill requirements and tips for coaches.

coaching kids soccer

8. Coaching Kids Soccer - Ages 5 to 10 

This book is written to support first-time coaches and help them in gaining confidence. It is a small book that focuses on tips for coaches and training drills for young players. The book is a quick read and the author does not lose focus on the subject. 

The drills mentioned are relatively simple and great fun for kids who are starting out with soccer. Also, there are diagrams to help you understand the technicalities.

Keep in mind, this is an elementary book that contains basic ideas for coaches.  For soccer coaching guidelines for senior players, you have to pick football books with more in-depth content.

attacking and shooting drills

9. Attacking and Shooting Drills for Soccer Coaches

This is the second from the series of soccer coaching books written by Chris King that we recommend. Here, the author discusses more complex drills that will improve the attacking and shooting skills of a team.

A big plus is, the author has kept the drills flexible. That means you can modify the setup based on the number of players at hand. Each drill is also linked to a short animated video which is a big plus. 

This is a great book for coaches looking for ideas to take the performance of the team to the next level. However, you will need a basic understanding of soccer to make the best use of the book.

attacking combinations soccer book

10. Pep Guardiola - 88 Attacking Combinations and Positional Patterns of Play

Pep Guardiola spent most of his soccer career with FC Barcelona and is the current manager of Manchester City.

He also appeared in the 1994 FIFA World Cup as a part of the Spanish National team. In this book, he shares tips from his immense experience in improving a team’s scoring ability.

A significant aspect of Guardiola’s coaching strategy is positional play and the use of aggressive combinations. In this book, he uses diagrams and illustrations to explain various strategies and shares actual examples from premier league matches.

With outlines of 60 attacking combinations and 28 attacking practices, this book helps you learn from one of the best coaches in the history of soccer. Keep in mind, the book is best for U14 pro-level players.

coaching kids to play soccer

11. Coaching Kids to Play Soccer

What makes this one of the best soccer coaching books is its focus on combining soccer training with fun. Both authors are experienced in various aspects of training and physical education.

They share their knowledge to make youth soccer all about winners and learners.

It also offers guidelines to coaches about motivating the players and focusing on the individual development of players. Drills that help players improve their basic skills and overall “soccer IQ” have also been listed.

Not all the tips offered by the authors will be applicable to junior players. But the book will help coaches to build up a soccer team of young players and guide them as they grow older.


How do you coach a youth soccer game?

A youth soccer coach needs to have the ability to impart knowledge to players while keeping them motivated. In addition to that, the coach should also encourage hard work and fair play practices.

What are the six tasks of a soccer coach?

The primary responsibilities of a soccer coach can be divided into six tasks.

  • Deciding on strategies and formations
  • Selecting the 11 players for the team
  • Making impactful decisions during a game
  • Plan the practice sessions
  • Motivate and encourage young talents
  • Communicating with players and their families

How do I teach a child to be more aggressive in soccer?

The best way to make players more aggressive is to talk to them and help them overcome their fears and limitations. Make sure that the kid focuses on the practice sessions that will help in perfecting the skills and raising confidence levels.

What are some good characteristics of a good soccer coach?

Some of the best traits that top coaches like Sir Alex Ferguson and José Mourinho have are excellent communication skills, focus on player development, and high emotional intelligence.

Final Thoughts

These are some of the best soccer coaching books that will help your team to deliver a great performance on the soccer field. 

For those aspiring to be professional soccer coaches, I would recommend more serious reads like Inverting The Pyramid: The History of Soccer Tactics by Jonathan Wilson. But the options listed above are good enough for coaching junior-level soccer teams.

To help the young players progress faster, one of the best tools that you can use is the Open Goaaal Soccer Trainer. By combining a goal with a backstop and rebounder, this trainer saves time and energy and allows the kids to focus more on the practice sessions.