Chelsea (foto: Getty Images)
In the high-stakes world of professional football, the pressure of penalty kicks can be overwhelming.
Tim Harkness, the psychologist for Premier League club Chelsea, recently shared his insights on how players can better handle these high-pressure situations, especially when taking penalty kicks.
In a revealing interview, Harkness discussed the psychological aspects of football, particularly focusing on penalty kicks. He shared an interesting perspective with a young coach at Chelsea, emphasizing that the best penalties are often those that are executed averagely. This approach counters the common belief that a penalty kick must be perfect to be successful.
Harkness elaborated on the concept of pressure in football. He believes that performing under pressure doesn't necessarily mean being better than one's best form. Instead, it's about consistently playing at one's best. He posed a thought-provoking question: In a World Cup final, should a player attempt the best penalty of their career or stick to their usual technique? According to Harkness, striving for a 'perfect' penalty often leads to misses, whereas an average execution is more likely to score.
This insight from Chelsea's psychologist offers a fresh perspective on how players can approach high-pressure situations like penalty kicks. By focusing on consistency rather than perfection, players might find themselves better equipped to handle the mental challenges of the game.