England news

Le Tissier offers England penalty advice

December 8, 2009
By Soccernet staff

Matt Le Tissier has offered his services as a penalty coach to England in a bid to help avoid World Cup shoot-out misery.

Matt Le Tissier
GettyImagesMatt Le Tissier had an impressive record from the spot

The former Southampton forward successfully converted 47 of the 48 penalties he took in his professional career and thinks it is strange that England do not employ a coach in an area that has cost England so dearly in big tournaments in the past.

With England losing on penalties to Portugal at the 2006 World Cup, as well as penalty heartbreak in a number of other major tournaments, Le Tissier believes he could help England improve their poor record in high-pressure shoot-outs.

"I'm surprised actually, with the way that football has gone, the number of staff clubs have and they say they never leave any stone unturned, I can't think of any club ever that has employed a penalty coach," he told talkSPORT. "When you look back at the number that have been missed so far this year, that could be worth quite a few quid come the end of the season. "

Le Tissier believes his penalty technique would help players hold their nerve under pressure. "I'd try and coach them the way I took them," he said. "It took out quite a lot of the negativity surrounding penalties in the mindset and it reduced the risk of the goalkeeper getting lucky.

"I'd hope that the players would be able to take it on board and have enough bottle to keep their head cool in the situation and not be afraid to change their mind at the last minute if they have to.''

Le Tissier revealed he used to bet youth team goalkeepers couldn't save any of his kicks, putting added pressure on him to convert spot-kicks in training. "I knew (the goalkeeper) was trying for every one of them and it meant I had to focus because I didn't want to give away money because I was tight,'' he said.